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Father Paul MacNeil

The Sacrament of Reconciliation is for our spiritual healing. According to the Gospels, after the Resurrection, Jesus appeared to the apostles, breathed on them, and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them; whose sins you shall retain, they are retained.” (John 20:22-23) The reason for this sacrament is to heal our spiritual wounds, which we call sin.

Catholics must confess all known mortal sins to a priest. By doing this, we put ourselves in the state of grace necessary to receive the Holy Eucharist.

Confessing sins to a priest is not as difficult as people think. Most people tell sensitive, delicate and confidential information to their doctor or lawyer, so why not a priest? The priest is bound by the most absolute secrecy and confidentiality known to humankind. Not even the Pope can get the priest to reveal what was said in the confessional.

  • Do I have to be a member of Our Lady of the Scapular to have my baby baptized there?
    The celebration of all our sacraments are community events and our community is our parish where we live. If you are a Catholic parent living within the boundaries of Our Lady of the Scapular, or living outside the parish boundaries but are registered and supporting the parish, you may have your child baptized here. If you live in another part of the diocese or in another city, but would like to have your child baptized here for special reasons, please email the parish office at
  • When can I have my child baptized?
    Baptism takes place outside of Mass every Sunday at 12:30 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. For serious pastoral reasons, your child could be baptized at another time with the approval of the priest.
  • Are we required to attend meetings or classes?
    Here at Our Lady of the Scapular, we require that all parents meet with one of the parish priests. During this meeting the date of baptism will be confirmed.
  • Who can be a Godparent?
    Every person being baptized, whether a child or an adult, must have a sponsor. The sponsors in Baptism have traditionally been called godparents. The minimum requirement is one sponsor, but usually when infants are baptized, they have two, one of each gender. Canon law permits only one godparent of each gender – a godmother and a godfather. To be a sponsor, you must: • Be at least 16 years or older • Have received Baptism, Eucharist and Confirmation • Be an active Catholic and be registered at a Catholic parish • Not be the parent of the one being baptized If you wish, along with the Catholic Godparent, a baptized Protestant Christian in good standing, can be a Christian Witness.
  • What if I am a single parent?
    If you are not married (single parent), this situation, by itself, is not a sufficient reason to delay the Baptism of your child.
  • What if we did not marry in the Catholic Church?
    During your meeting with one of the parish priests, the topic of Convalidation will be discussed. Each parent must make a promise to raise the child according to the faith, a faith that they themselves are practicing. That is difficult to do when the marriage is not a sacramental one. Jesus gave us His Sacraments to confer Grace upon us. It is this Grace that strengthens us to live according to His commandments. And this includes all of His sacraments. We support your decision to commit to each other in a civil marriage and would like to discuss the benefits to you and your relationship of inviting God into your life together by having your marriage convalidated (Sacramentalized by the Church). Every situation is a little different, and you can discuss this with the parish priest.
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