Congregation for the Clergy, Interrogation of a cleric seeking a dispensation from the obligations of the clerical state, 2013, Private.


The Congregation for the Clergy sent a set of questions to a diocesan bishop in response to a request for questions for petitioners used in instructing cases for dispensation from obligations of the clerical state.




Interrogation of the Petitioner

(All questions must be answered by the Petitioner under oath)

1. Your full name.

2. Exact date and place of birth.

3. Tell of your family background, the family’s economic situation, parent’s occupation, etc.

4. Were you free and sincere in your decision to remain celibate before your ordination to the diaconate?

5. What was the exact date of your ordination to the priesthood?

6. What studies did you accomplish before entering the Seminary, or during your time in the Minor Seminary? How many years did you study?

7. What studies did you accomplish during your time in the seminary prior to your ordination? Where did you do them? For how many years?

8. Did you accomplish any further studies? Which ones? Where? For how many years?

9. What pastoral work or apostolate did you carry out before your ordination?

10. List all appointments you were given after your ordination.

11. Did you have any difficulty in your early years of Seminary?

12. And during your studies of Philosophy?

13. Did you have any difficulty during your Theology studies or any other time prior to your ordination?

14. Did you have any difficulty after your ordination to the Priesthood? Which were they and how did you deal with them?

15. What made you think of becoming a priest? Describe as clearly as you can your motivation for entering the Seminary?

16. Was your decision free or felt to be free to join the Seminary? Did you feel any pressure from anyone to enter the Seminary?

17. Did you get on well with the formation staff? What would you say about the competence and way of acting of the formation staff and Superiors: a) in the early years of Seminary; b) during the main time of formation in the Seminary; c) during the last years of Seminary.

18. Did you suffer any physical or psychological illness? Did you consult a practitioner or specialist in the field? What was their opinion? Do you have a record? What did they do to solve your problem?

19. Were you responsible for any serious failure to your Christian commitments or obligations prior to ordination?

20. If so, how did you deal with them? Did you discuss it: a) with your Superiors? b) with any other? What was their opinion or advice?

21. When did you decide to leave or no longer continue a celibate life? What was the nature of the dissatisfaction?

22. Did you decide to leave the Priesthood at the same time? What were the circumstances that led up to this decision? What were the reasons behind it?

23. When did you leave your ministry and effectively cease to exercise the Priesthood?

24. Did you have the consent of your Ordinary? What sort of authorization precisely did you have?

25. Where are you living now: with your family or in another circumstance? What is your current occupation? Provide your current address: street, number, city, postcode, etc. In which Diocese is this found?

26. Have you attempted civil marriage? If so, what is the name of the woman? Is she free to marry? Or, are you cohabitating with her without having attempted civil marriage?

27. Do you have any children?

28. What are you requesting now concerning your obligations towards the Priesthood?

29. What are you reasons for requesting this dispensation?

30. Are you certain about your decision? Is your request of dispensation from the obligations of Holy Orders including celibacy considered as something definitive?

31. Have you been informed and are you aware that once you have been dispensed and returned to the lay state you will no longer be able or capable of exercising any priestly office or ministry?

32. Do you wish to change anything, to add, or withdraw anything from the evidence you have given?

(Place, day, month, year)

(Signature of the petitioning priest)

(Signature of the priest Instructor and notary taking the deposition)

(Stamp of the diocesan/provincial seal)




Congregation for the Clergy, Interrogation of a cleric seeking a dispensation from the obligations of the clerical state, 2013, Private, CLSA, Roman Replies and Advisory Opinions, 2013, 25-27.