White Robed Monks of St. Benedict

Frequently Asked Questions re First Communion

Why the White Robed Monks of St. Benedict?

The White Robed Monks of St. Benedict (WRMOSB), an independent Catholic jurisdiction not affiliated with the Roman Catholic community, offer you an alternative. Contemporary Catholics are not necessarily interested in finding Catholicism in an institutional place or organization as much as in people. They only search for a non-judgmental, sacramental experience different from that offered by the traditional, institutional church.

The WRMOSB were instituted as an independent Catholic jurisdiction in response to those with specific needs not being met within an institutional church. Specifically, the WRMOSB came into being to serve those experiencing religious and/or spiritual dissonance with an institutional church and those whose spiritual needs an institutional church could not meet. The bishops, priests and deacons of the WRMOSB serve The People by administering and celebrating the sacraments in compassion and love in a non-judgmental way, recalling the maxim Judge not, lest you be judged (Mt 7:1-2).

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What kind of preparation classes for First will I need to attend?

There are no classes per se that you need attend. We most strongly advise that you read carefully On the Sacrament of the Eucharist: Bread of Life. The priest offering First Communion may hold a conversation with you regarding The Eucharist. Please read and incorporate Being Christ-like: Self-Emptying. If you have any question or need for clarification, please consult with the priest offering you First Communion.
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Are there any restrictions as to where the ceremony can take place?

In the early church, Communion took place in the context of the family. The choice of location for your First Communion is yours, as in your own home for example. If you wish a church building, fine as the choice, again is yours, Any church that accepts outside clergy to offer a First Communion is fine. And outdoor setting is equally apt. It is The Family context that is key and essential. (Given that church (ecclesia means an assembly and acknowledging that the historical Jesus is recorded as saying: Where two or three are gathered together in my name, I am in there I am in the midst of you (Matt 18:20), The Church, therefore, is any assembly of The People, a congregation, coming together in the Name of the Lord.)
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Will a First Communion be recognized by the Roman Catholic Church?

The White Robed Monks of St. Benedict, as a distinct Catholic jurisdiction, are not affiliated with the Roman Catholic or any other Catholic jurisdiction. We cannot speak, therefore, for any other jurisdiction just as any other jurisdiction cannot speak for us. Through Apostolic Succession with other jurisdictions in the Old Catholic tradition, we celebrate the same seven sacraments as those in the Roman, Orthodox and any other Catholic jurisdiction. Your First Communion will be, given God's Love and Grace and your intention, a sacrament in the eyes of God.
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May I receive Communion in any Catholic, including Roman, Church?

The answer depends upon the human created rules and regulations of that particular Catholic jurisdiction. The White Robed Monks of St. Benedict understand that Jesus never really said NO to anyone who came to Him. We humans, on the other hand, have complicated matters by the institutionalization of religion at the expense of spirituality and Christ's Message and only two commandments: Love God, Love Neighbor. We have created division(s) when in truth, no division exists: God is One (1Cor 8:4, 1Tim 2:5). Yet, in God's house there are many rooms, as Jesus commented (John 14:2). Yet, in truth, there is only one house and one kitchen and one table where the family members gather to share meals, in this instance, The Bread of Life.

In The Roman Catholic Catechism of the Catholic Church we find:

1795 "Conscience is man's most secret core, and his sanctuary. There he is alone with God whose voice echoes in his depths" (GS 16).
1796 Conscience is a judgment of reason by which the human person recognizes the moral quality of a concrete act.
1797 For the man who has committed evil, the verdict of his conscience remains a pledge of conversion and of hope.
1798 A well-formed conscience is upright and truthful. It formulates its judgments according to reason, in conformity with the true good willed by the wisdom of the Creator. Everyone must avail himself of the means to form his conscience.
1799 Faced with a moral choice, conscience can make either a right judgment in accordance with reason and the divine law or, on the contrary, an erroneous judgment that departs from them.
1800 A human being must always obey the certain judgment of his conscience.
1801 Conscience can remain in ignorance or make erroneous judgments. Such ignorance and errors are not always free of guilt.
1802 The Word of God is a light for our path. We must assimilate it in faith and prayer and put it into practice. This is how moral conscience is formed.
We might sum-up these thoughts by quoting St. Augustine:
Love and do what you will. Whether you hold your peace, through love hold your peace. Whether you cry out, through love cry out. Whether your correct, through love correct. Whether you spare, through love must you spare. Let the root of love be within. For of this root can nothing come except that which is good. (Augustine, Sermon on the First Epistle of John 4:4-12, no. 8)
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What is the fee or charge for the WRMOSB sacramental services?

We do not, on principle, maintain fees for our sacramental services (Baptism, Marriage, etc.) Financial donations may be offered to assist in sustaining and furthering our ministry. Money is never an issue as we do not deny the sacraments to anyone. Whatever donation is offered will be gratefully accepted. If a priest/deacon is required to travel great distances to celebrate the sacrament with you, we would appreciate having those traveling costs covered. (If reimbursing officiant for car rental costs, please note there may be $20.00 to $50.00 additional fees not mentioned in advertised or stated quote. Please ask car rental agent what additional fees there may be: tax, drop-off fees, etc. If securing a hotel room for officiant, please pre-pay room cost.) If a donation check is made payable to the White Robed Monks of St. Benedict it may be considered tax deductible as the IRS recognizes the WRMOSB as a publicly supported (religious) organization. We will issue a Thank You note satisfying IRS protocols re Charitable Donations. Any goods or services you may receive in connection with your donation are solely intangible religious or spiritual benefits. Donations permit The White Robed Monks of St. Benedict to carry out sacramental, charitable and educational missions and activities.
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What is the procedure of requesting a bishop, priest or deacon to officiate at my Baptism and/or Confirmation?

Please complete a First Communion Petition. Upon receipt, we will do our best to accommodate your request. We will contact you shortly (usually within 72 hours) after our receipt of your petition form.
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If you have any further questions, please contact Father Abbot.

May many blessings be to you and yours now and forevermore.

Peace and Joy!

White Robed Monks of St. Benedict

Catholic Spirituality: Presence in Action
Being Christ-like: Self-Emptying

White Robed Monks of St. Benedict
Post Office Box 27536
San Francisco CA 94127-0536 USA
Phone: 415-292-3228
Page URL: http://www.whiterobedmonks.org/faqfhc.html
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