Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference, General Decree on Preaching in Church by the Laity, January 1998.


In accordance with the prescriptions of c. 766, and without prejudice to the provisions of c. 767, §1, the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference hereby decrees that the diocesan Bishop may authorise non-ordained persons who have received an adequate doctrinal preparation, to preach in churches on the following occasions:

1. When the officiating priest or deacon is unable to communicate in the language of the people.

2. In non-liturgical celebrations of the Word of God.

3. When particular circumstances require lay involvement, for example, special appeals.

All such persons who are called upon to preach are to have manifested an outstanding moral life and enjoy a good reputation in the community.

The diocesan bishop may also authorise seminarians in the course of their pastoral training to preach in churches.




Code of Canon Law Annotated (Montréal: Wilson & Lafleur Limitée, 2004): 1778.