Here at St. Joseph we support and encourage you in your desire to explore what it might mean in your life to be more active in practicing your Catholic faith.
Below are a few of the questions we are most frequently asked by those who are thinking about returning to the Church.
I am thinking of returning to the Catholic Church. Do I have to go through some kind of program in order to do this?
No, if you are a Catholic who has been baptized and received First Holy Communion you do not need to go through a program. However, St. Joseph does offer programs to help you learn more about the Church. Contact office for more info.
If I return to the Church will I need to go to confession? Or can I just come to Mass?
You are always welcome to come to Mass! There are no prerequisites or conditions for attending Mass. However, before receiving Holy Communion you will most likely want to celebrate the sacrament of God’s mercy and reconciliation by making a confession. You can simply go to confession at one of the scheduled times or call the Parish Office to arrange for a private appointment.
I don’t remember how to go to confession. What do I do?
Knowing the “formula” for confession is not as important as simply availing yourself of the sacrament. If you go to confession and tell the priest that it has been a long time and you don’t remember exactly what to do, he will talk you through it without trouble or embarrassment.
I am not married in the Catholic Church. Does that affect my return to the Church?
If this is your first marriage, then having your marriage recognized by the Catholic Church should be quite simple. If either you or your spouse have been married before we can still help you, but it will most likely take more time. Please call office or the pastor for more assistance.
I have been divorced. Does that affect my return? What if I am remarried?
Only if you have remarried. Divorce in and of itself does not affect your status in the church including participation in the sacraments, like Holy Communion. If you are remarried outside the Church you may still attend Mass, but it will be important for you to learn what is involved for the church to recognize your marriage. For instance, it is quite possible that you will be able to petition the Church for an annulment.
Click here (http://www.dioshpt.org/ministries/canonical-services/marriage-tribunal/the-five-types-of-cases/) for a link to the Tribunal website for the diocese of Shreveport. You will find answers to the most frequently asked questions regarding the annulment process.