Q. During the COVID-19 pandemic, most bishops dispensed the Catholic faithful from attendance at Mass on Sunday. How can a bishopóor anyone else, for that matteró dispense a person from a commandment of God: ìRemember to keep holy the Lordís Day.î
A. Simple. The dispensation is addressed in Church law. The Church made the law, the Church can end the law, and the Church can dispense the faithful from the law. A commandment cannot be dispensed with. You can keep the Lord’s day holy through your choices and decisions. The dispensation was not and could not be a dispensation from the commandment.
Q. A priest mentioned in a recent homily that there is more than one sacrament of reconciliation. This was news to me. I thought confession was the sacrament of reconciliation. Please explain.
A. The sacraments of reconciliation are, in normal order of reception, baptism, reconciliation, Eucharist, and the anointing of the sick. With the exception of baptism, which can only be received once, the other sacraments may be received numerous times. The primary manner in which reconciliation is celebrated is in the sacrament of reconciliation (confession), but God’s gift of reconciliation is not limited to one sacrament.