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For Fr. Hood, finding out his baptism — and ordination — were invalid a blessing in disguise

The first emotion was shock. Then came sadness. And the third — two weeks later — was déjà vu.

The past two weeks have been a roller coaster for Fr. Matthew Hood, who was ordained to the priesthood — some might say for the second time, but in reality, for the first — on Aug. 17, 2020, for the Archdiocese of Detroit.

Fr. Hood’s world was turned upside down Aug. 6, when the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued a doctrinal note ruling that baptisms using an altered formula — specifically, those using the phrase, “We baptize you …” instead of the Church’s ancient prayer, “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit” — are invalid.

Thirty years ago, that was the formula a deacon used to baptize Fr. Hood — then an infant — at St. Anastasia Parish in Troy.

“It was devastating for me to find that out,” Fr. Hood told Detroit Catholic. “It meant I wasn’t baptized, and I hadn’t received any of my other sacraments — first Communion, confirmation or ordination to the diaconate or the priesthood.”

In other words, he wasn’t actually a priest.

According to sacramental theology, only a baptized Catholic can validly receive the other sacraments, since baptism is the means by which a person enters the Church and is incorporated into the body of Christ.

Read more at Detroit Catholic

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