FAQ on our Faith
Yes, all are welcome! However, you would have to refrain from receiving Holy Communion. The reasons for this are explained in the back of our missal.
All are welcome to celebrate Mass with us. However you cannot receive Communion if you are baptized in another faith due to the differences in theology and the structures of governance that exist between the Christian faiths. Holy Communion signifies among Catholics that we are in union with each other; we follow one creed, uphold the teachings of the magisterium, and are obedient to the pope. There are even some Catholics who may not be living the full teachings of the Catholic Church and will therefore choose not to receive Holy Communion when they attend Mass. More information can be found in the back of the missal.
Please call your local parish to enroll in their Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA). RCIA is the primary process by which adults become full members of the Catholic Church. However, it is not the only means. If you're already attending St. Gregory the Great Parish please call us at (716) 688-5678.
There are many options available to those adults who only need to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation. At St. Gregory's we hold Adult Confirmation Classes during Lent. However, you are not limited to this option. Please call the Parish Office to see how we can better assist you.
Only a Catholic priest, by reason of his ordination, has the responsibility and humble privilege to offer absolution in the name of Jesus Christ and the Church. Whatever is said during the Sacrament of Confession cannot be repeated to anyone else. What is confessed is held as sacred between you, the priest, and God.
Simply go. Jesus teaches us that the angels sing God's praises when one repentant sinner comes to God seeking forgiveness. Our priests welcome all who seek God's mercy and love, whether it has been one week or fifty years. God is waiting to give His love, mercy and forgiveness. Please do not worry about the format for confession, the priest will guide you through the prayers and act of contrition.
The Rite of Christian Burial or Funeral can be celebrated for anyone of any or no faith. It is the ritual in which we mourn the loss of a loved one, yet rejoice in the eternal promise of life everlasting with our Lord. The Rite begins with the vigil prayers, moves to the Mass or liturgy of the word and ends with the rite of committal at the cemetery.
No. You are welcome to attend these services, but need to refrain from receiving their communion. The Church teaches that the Holy Eucharist celebrated at a Catholic Mass is not only the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Christ, but also unites all Catholics as One Body. By receiving the Holy Eucharist at a Catholic Mass you are making the public statement that you are in union with the Roman Catholic Church. The Protestant Christian faiths are not in union with the Roman Catholic Church. By partaking of their communion, even though you may be invited to do so, would be a misrepresentation of yourself and the Roman Catholic Church.
According to Canon Law in order to be a Godparent a person must be requested by either the candidate for baptism or by their parents or guardians. If there are no viable Godparent candidates you can contact your Church and they will work with you to appoint someone. The Godparent must be 16 years or older, be confirmed, have made their First Communion, and be a person who lives a life of faith and attends Mass regularly. Parents cannot serve as Godparents to their own children. One Godparent, male or female, is sufficient but there may be two, one of each sex. These guidelines also apply to those who are invited to be a Sponsor for the Sacrament of Confirmation, except that the Sponsor must be a Catholic who is active, fully initiated, and in good standing in the Catholic Church.
If you are divorced, we highly encourage you to seek an annulment. Please start the process as soon as possible after the divorce is decreed by the State. An annulment does not affect the status of your children. An annulment does recognize that a relationship did exist between two people, but that there existed an impediment for that relationship to be a marriage as defined by the Church. Please view our Information for Divorced or Separated Catholics document, contact any of our parish priests for further consultation or call the Tribunal Office at (716) 847-8769 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Each annulment case is taken on an individual basis. Please also refer to www.togetherforlifeonline.com for more questions on marriage in the Catholic Church.
Our faith life is constantly growing just as the person is constantly maturing. What once worked when you were five years old, does not necessarily work for you as an adult. This goes the same with our faith journey. Consult your local priest. Seek out retreats, days/evenings of reflections, join a prayer group, bible study, or get involved in a ministry in your parish. We grow stagnant in our faith because we have not changed our "routine" of living out our faith. It is the still waters that grow stagnant, a flowing river is always moving to something greater. See our “Ways to Grow Deeper in Your Faith” page for more ideas!
This is an age-old question that unfortunately is not the question one needs to ask. The question is more about, "what should I do this Lent to be drawn closer to Christ?" The Church teaches that there are three disciplines we should enter into more fervently during this holy season; almsgiving, fasting and prayer. There is no single answer to this question, it depends on the individual, and what will help them to draw closer to Christ. Some people choose to give something up as a discipline to lead them to holiness. Others may choose to take something on such as daily Mass, or service to the poor, or spiritual reading as a means of building a holy habit in their life that will draw them closer to Christ.
There is Lectio Divina (praying with Scripture), sitting in quiet, music, reading the lives of the Saints, The Liturgy of the Hours, or spending time in Eucharistic Adoration. Prayer is not so much about doing something or saying anything but our attempt to communicate with God. It is also an opportunity for us to be able to listen to God. Good communication entails one to be quiet and listen as well as to speak.
Anyone can attend Eucharistic Adoration. We believe the Eucharist is the true presence of Christ, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity. The Scriptures encourage us to “come away” and spend quiet time before the Lord. There is a real grace that comes from giving of ourselves and our time as we sit in contemplation with our Lord.
Pray, listen, listen, & listen. This is your opportunity to simply sit in the holy presence of our Lord. There is no need to do anything but to gaze upon the Lord as He gazes upon us. Our very presence with Him is all that is necessary.
Benediction is the blessing over the people with the Eucharist in the monstrance during the celebration of adoration within a liturgy. Benediction is only done by an ordained minister of the Church (bishop, priest or deacon).