How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Tina Your Own Question
Tina, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 8775
Experience:  JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.
Type Your Legal Question Here...
Tina is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I am a permanent deacon in the Archdiocese of Washington. I

Customer Question

I am a permanent deacon in the Archdiocese of Washington. I was dismissed by a diocesan priest from a parish without the Archbishop's consent or notification. What recourse do I have? I have written the Permanent Diaconate Office with a copy of the letter to the Archbishop of Washington. I have received no response when I inquired on 3/17/2015 and again on 4/20/2015. Please respond. Thank you. Deacon Alton Davis.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  canonlaw replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question! I am sorry for your situation. First of all, you have been doing the correct thing till now. If the text of the letter of 4/20/2015 is sufficiently clear requesting the competent authority and intervention of clarification of this dismissal and asking for a new appointment, reserving your right for claiming damages, you can apply to the following canon of the Code: "Can. 57 §1. Whenever the law orders a decree to be issued or an interested party legitimately proposes a petition or recourse to obtain a decree, the competent authority is to provide for the matter within three months from the receipt of the petition or recourse unless the law prescribes some other time period. §2. When this time period has passed, if the decree has not yet been given, the response is presumed to be negative with respect to the presentation of further recourse. §3. A presumed negative response does not exempt the competent authority from the obligation of issuing the decree and even of repairing the damage possibly incurred, according to the norm of can. 128." But for the exactness of the recourse before the Holy See, you would probably need the assistance of a canon lawyer. If needed, accept the complementary services of this site, offered with this initial answer. Many blessings.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you for your response to my question. It turns out it was enough to at least get a response from the Permanent Diaconate Office. Now I need to know if the pastor has a canon law he can refer to if he wants to justify his action with me. I do not believe it is in the canon as the bishop or local ordinary is the one to assign and reassigns deacons to local parishes. But I would be better off if I knew if there was such a canon. I really appreciate your help at this time!


Deacon Alton Davis