Shrewsbury ... shall be a name 'as stirring to the heart as the glories we have lost'

Blessed John Henry Newman, 1852


Parishes – Structuring and management – Parish registers

Parish Registers

Parish priests must carefully maintain sacramental records: Baptismal, Receptions,  Marriage,  Death,   The Code specifies what kinds of information are to be maintained in those records.

Each Latin parish must have its own set of registers (c535) including a parochial baptismal register containing prescribed information accurately and carefully maintained by the parish priest.  A number of things have to be noted against each entry (e.g. confirmation, marriage, adoption, ordination, perpetual profession).   Under the new modifications to the canon law of the Latin or Western Church which governs us, we must now also specifically note in our baptismal registers ascription to (membership of) a Catholic Church sui iuris and/or any transfer from it to another Church sui iuris

If a Latin cleric baptizes a child of Eastern Catholic parents who come to him for baptism for their child and who may even be regular church attenders in his church rather than worship in their own rite, that child does not thereby become a member of the Latin or Western Church to which he belongs.  The child must belong to the Eastern Catholic Church of the parents.  This is so even though he must use the normal Latin or Western rite of baptism for children and even if  nothing further is said.  That has long been the case.  Now, after any such baptism, that fact must be specifically acknowledged in the baptismal register.  As well as giving the normal details of the baptism, we must make a clear written note adding that the child is ascribed to the specific Church sui iuris of those Eastern catholic parents.   It would be good practice if we also were to send notifications of the baptism to the relevant cleric of the Eastern Church concerned.  All notations in the baptismal register have to be reproduced on any baptismal certificates which we issue.