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Women reading the Gospel reading and giving homily
Question from Bob Verduzcoq on 8/3/2001:

Hi,

I attended Sunday Mass last Sunday at 7:30 PM here in Hayward, CA at All Saints Church. I was quite confused when a lady read the Gospel reading and then proceeded to kiss the bible as a Priest or Deacon would after the reading was completed. She then went on to give a 20 minute homily about the reading. Is this allowed by the Catholic Church?

Thanks so much for this service!

God Bless,

Bob Verduzco

Answer by Fr. John Trigilio on 8/4/2001:

ABSOLUTELY NOT. Only the Deacon, Priest or Bishop can proclaim the Gospel at Mass and only they can preach the homily. This is EXPLICITLY stated in the rubrics (GIRM #42; App. #66) and canon law (CIC #767)

"Can. 767 §1 The most important form of preaching is the homily, which is part of the liturgy, and is reserved to a priest or deacon. In the course of the liturgical year, the mysteries of faith and the rules of christian living are to be expounded in the homily from the sacred text.

§2 At all Masses on Sundays and holydays of obligation, celebrated with a congregation, there is to be a homily and, except for a grave reason, this may not be omitted."

Now, Canon 766 does say the laity MAY be permitted to preach, but they can NEVER preach the Homily which is the sermon preached at Mass following the Gospel.



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