By DESMOND FISHER ROME, Tuesday POPE PAUL VI today extended to all residential bishops in the world a long list of faculties for which they had previously to apply to the Holy See. The list consists of forty faculties which were formerly contained in the three-year and five-year permission granted to bishops.
The faculties can also be delegated to coadjutor and auxiliary bishops and vicargenerals, and are given, according to the document, to emphasise their episcopal dignity and to help their pastoral ministry.
Under the new powers, bishops will no longer have to apply to Rome to permit priests if necessary to celebrate two Masses on weekdays and three on Sundays, to celebrate Mass at any time of the day, and to distribute Communion in the evening.
Bishops will also be able to permit priests celebrating two or three Masses to take liquids even though there is not the interval of an hour before the next Mass.
Infirm or old priests may be permitted by the bishop to celebrate daily the Votive Mass of the Blessed Virgin or the Mass of the Dead or to say Mass at home.
Bishops may also dispense for a just and reasonable cause from all minor matrimonial impediments, even in the case of mixed marriages, without having to apply to Rome.
The mold proprio also extended to bishops, whether residential or titular, the right to preach and hear confessions anywhere in the world. Hitherto this privilege was reserved to cardinals.
All bishops will also have the right to absolve from reserved sins, to reserve the Blessed Sacrament in their private oratories, to celebrate Mass at any hour of the day if there is a serious reason, and to distribute Holy Communion in the evening.
But missionary bishops, who come under the jurisdiction of the Congregation for Propagation of the Faith. get no new powers.
All the faculties now extended to bishops have been enjoyed by mission bishops for 100 years.
THE Catholic Teachers' Federation is preparing for its threeday annual conference which opens in Bournemouth on New Years Day.
Archbishop King. Bishop of Portsmouth, will celebrate a Dialogue Mass on the evening of January 1. and this will be followed by a Civic Reception in the Pavilion.
Public sessions of the conference will be held in the Town Hall.