What is the Catholic Church of America?
We are an accepting and affirming community
of faith. We are a family of believers in our Lord Jesus Christ welcoming all
who are in search of the love of God supporting one another in our journey of
The Catholic Church of America is the historical Roman Catholic Church in principle, doctrine,
sacraments, and rules according to all ecclesiastical laws and is in the line of
succession of the Old Catholic Churches.
The Catholic Church of America has always used the same ritual and liturgy as the early Church
practiced, abiding by the same doctrines and dogma; following the exact teaching
given by the Apostles of Christ, and continuing through valid historical
Apostolic Succession down to the present. Certain text in the Papal Bull of Pope
Pius X of February 1911 reveals and recognizes, beyond all possibility of
question, the absolute validity of the Orders of the Old Catholic Church and by
virtue of the line of direct succession, The Catholic Church of America. We recognize the Papal Roman Catholic Church as the first true
Church of Jesus Christ and the Pope, the Bishop of Rome, as the center of
Please see: The Declaration of Utrecht
The Holy Eucharist, the principal act of
Christian worship of the Lord's Day (Sunday) and other major Feasts, and Daily
Morning and Evening Prayer, are the regular services appointed for public
worship in this church. In addition to these services other forms or rites are
set forth by the authority within this church may be used. These rites as used
when celebrating the seven sacraments. In all services, the entire Christian
assembly participates in such a way that the members of each order within the
Church, lay persons, bishops, priests, and deacons, fulfill the functions proper
to their respective orders, as set forth in the rubical directions for each
The leader of worship in the church
assembly is normally a bishop or priest. Deacons, by virtue of their order, do
not exercise a presiding function, except at the discretion of the bishop who
may authorize the deacon to preside at other rites, also subject to the
limitations described in the directions for each service.
The sacraments are moments of God touching
our lives in a special way and opportunities for growth in our relationship with
Baptism. The Rite of Baptism incorporates us into Christ and forms us into God's
people. This first sacrament pardons all our sins, rescues us from the power of
darkness, and brings us to the dignity of adopted children, a new creation
through water and the Holy Spirit. Hence we are called and are indeed the
children of God. It is a very ancient custom of the Church that adults are not
admitted to baptism without godparents. These are members of the Christian
community who will assist the candidates at least in the final preparation for
baptism and, after baptism, will help them preserve in the faith and in their
lives as Christians. The ordinary ministers of baptism are bishops, priests and
deacons. The words for conferring baptism in the Church are: "I BAPTIZE YOU
IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER, AND THE SON, AND THE HOLY SPIRIT."
Confirmation: those who have been baptized continue on the path of Christian
initiation through the sacrament of confirmation. In this sacrament they receive
the Holy Spirit whom the Lord sent upon the apostles on Pentecost. This giving
of the Holy Spirit confirms believers more fully to Christ and strengthens them
so that they may bear witness to Christ for the building up of his Body in faith
and love. They are so marked with the character or seal of the Lord that the
sacrament of confirmation cannot be repeated. Great pains are taken to give the
liturgical service the festive and solemn character that its significance for
the local Church requires. The ordinary minister of confirmation is the bishop.
The sacrament is conferred through the anointing with chrism (Holy Oil) on the
forehead, which is done by the laying on of the hand, and through the words:
"BE SEALED WITH THE GIFT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT."
Eucharistic Feast: the Mass. When Christ the Lord was about to celebrate the Passover meal
with his disciples and instituted the sacrifice of his body and blood, he
directed them to prepare a large, furnished room. The sacrificial nature of the
mass was solemnly proclaimed through the ages in the church councils by saying:
"at the Last Supper our Savior instituted the Eucharistic sacrifice of his
body and blood to perpetuate the sacrifice of the cross through the centuries
until he comes again. He entrusted it to his bride, the Church, as a memorial of
his resurrection. This teaches us that the sacrifice of the cross and its
sacramental renewal in the Mass are one and the same, differing only in the
manner of offering. It is at once a sacrifice of praise and of thanksgiving, a
sacrifice that reconciles us to the Father and makes amends to him for the sins
of the world. The Church believes that the Lord Jesus is really present among us
in a wonderful way under the Eucharistic species. The distinctive nature of the
ministerial priesthood is clear from the prominent place the presbyter occupies
and functions he takes in the rite itself: he offers sacrifice in the person of
Christ and presides over the assemble of God's hold people. The ministerial
priesthood throws light on another and important priesthood, namely, the royal
priesthood of believers. Their spiritual sacrifice of today is accomplished
through the ministry of the presbyter, in union with the sacrifice of Christ,
our one and only Mediator. The celebration of the Eucharist is the action of the
whole Church, in which each individual should take his own full part and only
his part, as determined by his particular position in the people of God.
This is the order of the Mass: Introductory
Rites - Entrance Song, Greeting - Penitential Rite - the Gloria - Opening Prayer
- Liturgy of the Word - a reading from the Old Testament - Responsorial Psalm -
a reading from New Testament - a reading from one of the Gospels - Homily -
Profession of Faith - General Intercessions - Liturgy of the Eucharist -
presentation of the gifts - prayer of the gifts - Eucharistic Prayer - reciting
of the Sanctus - Memorial Acclamation - Final Doxology - Communion Rite - Lord's
Prayer - Sign of Peace - Breaking of the Bread - Communion - Prayer after
Communion - Concluding Rite - Greeting - Blessing - Dismissal.
Penance (Reconciliation). The Sacrament of Reconciliation stresses the healing presence of
Christ. This is not merely the telling of specific sins but a compassionate
forgiveness of one's sinfulness in an attitude of sorrow. Penitents can opt to
receive the sacrament either anonymously in the confessional or face-to-face.
Reconciliation is a personal encounter with Jesus Christ represented by the
priest. The penitent admits to God that he or she has sinned, makes an act of
sorrow, accepts a penance, and resolves to do better in the future. The priest
prays over the person in these words: "God, the Father of mercies, through
the death and resurrection of his Son has reconciled the world to himself and
set the Holy Spirit among us for forgiveness of sins; through the ministry of
the Church may God give you pardon and peace, and I absolve you from your sins
in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit."
Anointing of the Sick. The anointing of the sick gives spiritual strength and healing to those
who are aged or ill. This sacrament may be received any time during illness. In
this sacrament God invites believers to commune with him in the light of their
final meeting with him. Through this sacrament, the entire Church asks God to
lighten suffering, forgive sins, and bring the faithful to eternal salvation.
Anointing of the sick helps them to share more fully in the cross of Christ. By
so sharing, they contribute to the spiritual good of the whole Church. By the
fact they share more fully in the cross of Christ through anointing, they are
being prepared for a fuller share in Christ's Resurrection. The priest presides
over this sacrament. The anointing of the side is with blessed oil.
Matrimony. Jesus took marriage and made it the sacrament of matrimony. As a
result, matrimony gives a new dimension to the Christian vocation that begins in
baptism. In matrimony a husband and wife are called to love each other in a very
practical way; by serving each other's most personal needs; by working seriously
at communicating their personal thoughts and feelings to each other so their
oneness is always alive and growing. It is a sacramental vocation in and for the
Church. It is a medium through which Christ reveals and deepens the mystery of
his oneness with us, his Body. In the Church, a couple's sacramental union is
exclusive (one man one woman) and indissoluble (till death do us part). This is
the one sacrament that is conferred not by the priest but by the ones marrying;
the husband and wife. The priest witnesses the sacrament and gives the Church's
blessing of the marriage.
Holy Orders: Ministerial Priesthood. Christ is the Body of the Church. As such, the whole Church shares in
the nature and tasks of Christ, our head. There is though a ministerial
priesthood of Christ that certain members of the Church receive through the
sacrament of holy orders. In the Eucharistic sacrifice the ordained priest acts
'in the person of Christ" and offers the sacrifice to God in the name of
all, and the people join with the priest in that offering. Priests share in
Christ's ministry by preaching his gospel, doing all in their power to bring
their people to Christian maturity. They baptize, heal, forgive sin in the
sacrament of penance, and act as the Church witness in the sacraments of
matrimony and anointing of the sick. Most importantly, priests celebrate the
Eucharist, which is "the center of the assembly of the faithful over which
the priest presides" When priests are ordained, they "are signed with
a special character," an interior capability that empowers them to
"act in the person of Christ the head." This special inner
"character" unites priests in a sacramental bond with one another - a
fact that, in a sense, sets them apart from other people. This "being set
apart" is meant to help priests do God's work with total dedication.
These are the sacraments of the Church. We
celebrate these sacraments as a whole and are the main activities of the church.
Other activities include funerals of the departed, para-liturgical services:
devotions and prayer services, etc.
If you are interested more information,
please go to History
of the Church.
Toward the end of the 16th Century, a
conflict between sovereign states in Europe and the Roman See; the Vatican
erupted, thus creating two opposing views with reference to the relationship
between bishops and the Papacy. The first position stated that national churches
have certain rights within the framework of the Papacy, such as electing of
Bishops with approval of the Vatican. The second view maintained that the Pope
is supreme in all local churches since he claims to be the Vicar of Christ on
earth; local bishops are but the vicars of the Pope in each diocese. Chief
advisors to the Pope began to question the loyalty of the Church of Utrecht,
Holland, which had always elected its own Archbishop. The real issue was the
right of national churches to administer their own affairs without hindrance
from the Vatican. Pope Benedict XIII eventually deposed Archbishop Codde of
Utrecht and replaced him. As a result, the Dutch Church broke communion with
Rome and has maintained a separate existence since 1725-1727. It is from the
Church of Utrecht that the Catholic Church of America
derives her apostolic
The second major epoch commenced from
the time of the First Vatican Council during the 1860's. Pope Pius IX had
previously proclaimed as "dogma", the opinion that the Blessed Virgin
Mary had never been stained by Original Sin; hence her Immaculate Conception.
Furthermore, Pope Pius IX advocated the promulgation of the "dogma" of
Papal Infallibility, which was officially proclaimed in 1869, at that Council.
The historical Apostolic Succession of the Old Roman Catholic Church began with His Eminence, Antonio Cardinal Barberni (1607-1671), Archbishop of Rheims, Cardinal-Priest of the Roman Catholic Church. And, the line of succession has provided valid orders to the present. Press Here for a detail of our Apostolic Succession.
Gerard Gul, Archbishop of Utrecht consecrated Arnold Harris Matthew, Bishop for
Great Britain. He consecrated De Landes Berghes in 1912 for work in the United
States. He consecrated Carmel Henry Cafora in 1920. He consecrated Robert Alfred
Burns in 1956. He consecrated Archbishop Robert Lane in 1970. He
consecrated Archbishop Floyd Anthony Kortenhof, of the Old Roman Catholic
Church, English Rite in 1991, who consecrated Bishop Thomas E. Abel who
leads, governs and provides spiritual guidance to the church.
The Catholic Church of America is led by
the Most Reverend Mark R. Earl , who provides the sacraments to the faithful.
Parish communities of the church are located in the following cities: San Diego
and Palm Springs, California Las Vegas, Nevada,.
The church reaches out to believers in
Christ and those who are searching for the truth through knowing Christ. We
actively seek out and are open to people called by God to be part of his church.
There are no limits place on the members of our church except to accept Christ
and follow the beliefs of our church found in the Creed and as explained in the
church councils through the ages. Revealed truths are found in Cannon law as
well and the great writers of theology. We stress the personal responsibility of
each person in knowing God and acting according to God's will as has been
revealed to the church through the ages. Our members are to understand it is
their personal responsibility to know God and for their own action throughout
life. We know we are all sinners but we also know that Jesus came to earth and
became man to save us from our sins and give us the promise of heaven.
Masses and other devotional services are
held in member's homes and in the church facilities of other denominations.
At Sacred Heart Community, Catholic Church of America, in San Diego County
Masses are held every Sunday
Individuals who are interested in attending services or would like more information may call the Parish telephone number 858-522-0072
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