Sunday, September 25, 2022

Thousands Of Baptisms Invalidated After Priest Accidentally Used The Wrong Word

There is no “we” in Baptism; there is an “I,” though.

That difference has invalidated thousands of baptisms performed by an Arizona priest who, since 1995, has accidentally used the phrase “we baptize you” instead of “I baptize you” while performing the Catholic ritual.

In a letter to worshippers last month, Fr. Andres Arango apologized for the error and, “with a heavy heart,” announced his resignation from the parish while pledging to “help remedy this and heal those affected.”

The Vatican itself has ruled that the seemingly small error is nothing of the sort, ordering them all redone using the correct terms.

The diocese compared the word switcheroo to swapping out wine for milk during the Eucharist; in other words, it’s a small change that has big consequences. So big that they render everything else moot.

“I don’t believe Fr. Andres had any intentions to harm the faithful or deprive them of the grace of baptism and the sacraments,” Phoenix Bishop Thomas Olmsted wrote in a letter to worshipers.

Diocese spokesperson Katie Burke told NPR the church doesn’t know the exact number of those affected, but given Arango’s decadeslong tenure in Arizona, San Diego and Brazil, “thousands” may now need to repeat the ceremony and any subsequent sacraments.

That includes some unexpected trickle-down effects as well, including even potentially invalidating some marriages.

“Will this affect my marriage?” one FAQ section asks.

The answer: “Maybe! Unfortunately, there is no single clear answer. There are a number of variables when it comes to marriage valids, and the Tribunal is here to help.”

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Nation World News Desk
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