​Office of Spiritual Affairs

​Appen​​dix 1 - Visiting Clergy-Laity Protocol for Lay Movements


Reverend and dear Fathers and the beloved laity of the Archdiocese,


The following Protocol is to be observed by those Lay Movements and Associations that invite clergy or laity who reside outside of the Archdiocese of Toronto, to offer retreats, conferences, days of reflection, and sacramental ministry to the faithful of your group.


Please note:

* Meeting the criteria of this Protocol does not guarantee that one's request will be granted by the Episcopal Vicar for Lay Movements and Associations, or by the Office of Spiritual Affairs.

* The Lay Movement or Association that issues the invitation to the visiting member of the clergy or laity is responsible to ensure that:

  1. The conduct of the invited individual and the content of his or her presentation support Catholic teaching on faith and morals.
  2. A follow up is made to the Office of the Episcopal Vicar for Lay Movements and Associations, as well as to the Office of Spiritual Affairs, regarding any action taken by the invited person that is not in accord with Catholic teaching regarding faith and morals.

 

Members of the Lay Faithful

When a layperson from outside of the Archdiocese of Toronto is invited by a Lay Movement or Association to exercise ministry regarding faith and morals within the Archdiocese of Toronto (i.e.: speaking/teaching engagements, leading worship outside of approved liturgical celebrations, assisting with sacramental preparation, etc.) the following Protocol is to be observed, and the necessary documentation is to be completed and submitted to the Office of the Episcopal Vicar for Lay Movements and Associations four to six months prior to the date of the planned event:

  1. Letter of Invitation from the official leader of the Lay Movement or Association (i.e. group, religious community, or clergy) indicating: what is the purpose of the invitation; the scope of the ministry to be exercised; and the duration of stay and place of residence while visiting.
  2. Letter of Request from the individual(s) who are being invited to exercise ministry, formally requesting in writing to visit the Archdiocese. The content of this written request should include: the scope of the ministry that will be exercised; the duration of stay; and place of residence while visiting.  The letter should be signed by the respective individual(s) and issued within four to six months prior to the proposed date of the event.
  3. Letter of Good Standing (issued within the last 6 months) from the respective layperson's local Ordinary indicating that the individual's ministry is theologically sound and that the individual is not under any ecclesial censure. This letter is to accompany the letter of request.

Note: Documentation

  1. All three documents (i.e. Letter of Invitation, Letter of Request and Letter of Good Standing) are to be given together in one submission to the Episcopal Vicar of Lay Movements and Associations.

Note: Financial

  1. Collections from a parish or group of any kind intended for the benefit of the visiting layperson are strongly discouraged.
  2.  If the host Pastor wishes to have a collection, then permission must be obtained from the Vicar for Lay Movements and the Chancellor of Temporal Affairs, ensuring that the relative Canada Revenue Agency regulations are observed.
  3. If the pastor wishes to offer remuneration to the visiting layperson, the relevant Canada Revenue Agency regulations must be observed.

 

Clergy Visiting the Archdiocese for a Maximum of 30 days

When a member of the clergy, not from this Archdiocese, has been invited by a Lay Movement or Association to perform some ministry, the following requirements should be submitted to the Office of the Episcopal Vicar for Lay Movements and Associations four to six months prior to the date of the planned event:

  1. Letter of Invitation from the official leader of the Lay Movement or Association (i.e. group, religious community, or clergy) indicating: what is the purpose of the invitation; the scope of the ministry to be exercised; and the duration of stay and place of residence while visiting.
  2. Letter of Request from the individual(s) who are being invited to exercise ministry, formally requesting in writing to visit the Archdiocese. The content of the request should include: the scope of the ministry that will be exercised; the duration of stay; and place of residence while visiting.  The letter should be signed by the respective individual(s) and issued within four to six months prior to the proposed date of the event.
  3. Letter of Good Standing (issued within the last 6 months) from the respective clergyman's local Ordinary or religious superior indicating that the individual has valid faculties and is not under any ecclesial censure.

Once these letters are received by the Office of the Episcopal Vicar for Lay Movements and Associations (and provided everything is in good order), a request will be made to the Office of Spiritual Affairs to issue temporary faculties for the duration of the individual's stay, and the Office of Clergy Personnel will be notified.  The faculties will be sent to the respective individual upon their approval.

Note: Documentation

  1. All three documents (i.e. Letter of Invitation, Letter of Request and Letter of Good Standing) are to be given together in one submission to the Episcopal Vicar of Lay Movements and Associations.

Note: Financial

  1. Collections of any kind intended for the benefit of the visiting cleric are strongly discouraged.
  2.  If the Pastor wishes to have a collection, then permission must be obtained from his Regional Bishop and the Chancellor of Temporal Affairs, ensuring that the relative Canada Revenue Agency regulations are observed.
  3. If the pastor wishes to offer remuneration to the visiting cleric, the relevant Canada Revenue Agency regulations must be observed.

 

Resources

Download: Appendix 1 - Visiting Clergy-Laity Protocol for Lay Movements (PDF)