Pledge of Commitment to the Catholic Tenets of Faith
and Pre-Application Statement for the
Catholic Church in America
“Go out to the whole world and proclaim the Good News to all creation.” (Mark 16:15)
We, the People of God of the Catholic Church in America (CCIA), both clergy and lay, guided by the Holy Spirit, are called by Christ to proclaim the Good News of the Kingdom of God through prayer, praise and sacraments and to witness the Gospel values of love, justice, forgiveness and service to all.
All Christ’s faithful, by virtue of their baptism, are called by God to contribute to the sanctification and transformation of the world. They do this by fulfilling their own particular duties in the spirit of the Gospel and Christian discipleship. Working in the Church is a path of Christian discipleship to be encouraged. Those who work for the Church continue the mission and ministry of Christ. Their service is unique and necessary for the life and growth of the Church. This has been our tradition from the beginning, as echoed in the words of St. Paul who worked with and relied on other men and women in the work of spreading the Gospel. St. Paul was known to acknowledge and thank them, at times calling them, “my co-workers in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 16:3-16)
The Church needs the services of dedicated clergy and laypersons who have a clear knowledge and proper understanding of the teachings of the Church and a firm adherence to those teachings, and whose words and deeds are in conformity with the Gospel. All who seek employment or ministry in the Church are expected to continue their formation and their willingness to learn and grow and to deepen their desire to serve the Lord with excellence and generosity. Those employed by the Church in our Catholic schools, parishes and institutions, as coworkers in the vineyard of the Lord, are rightly expected to be practicing Catholics whose faith is an essential part of their daily lives and who participate fully in the communal worship and life of the Church.
We recognize that persons who are non-Catholic Christians are also called by the Lord to stand before the world as a witness to his life and resurrection. We, therefore, welcome collaboration with such persons of good faith who share our Catholic vision on important social, moral and ethical issues. It is important for anyone interested in collaborating with us in our work and ministry to have an understanding of the Catholic Church and her teachings.
Our Catholic religious beliefs provide the basic framework for our moral, ethical and social teachings. It is important for anyone interested in collaborating with us in our work and ministry to have an understanding of these teachings.
The Catholic Church has a special commitment to the poor, the oppressed, and the marginalized. We are committed to promoting a “Culture of Life” from the moment of conception to the moment of natural death. We believe in the inherent dignity of the human person, created in the image and likeness of God, and possessing basic rights endowed by God, including the right to life, the right to religious liberty, and the right to be treated justly with dignity and respect. We believe human sexuality and human procreation are gifts from God to be shared through the risen Christ only by those joined in marriage, an institution that is itself instituted by Almighty God.
We believe that all persons are called by God to live chaste lives by virtue of their own dignity and according to their state of life. We oppose all forms of oppression and exploitation, including racism, sexism, pornography, sexual abuse and harassment, and unlawful discrimination.
As a community of believers, we embrace as a matter of faith, the teachings, policies and beliefs of the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, as defined in the Deposit of Faith. We, therefore, reject anything which is contrary to that teaching, including:
- Abortion, euthanasia, assisted suicide, and abortifacient artificial contraception
- Pornography and obscenity, adultery, cohabiting in sexual relationships of any nature outside of marriage, homosexual activity, the notion of “gay marriage,” and the adoption or placement of children in anything other than a traditional family setting;
- Secularism, the paring back of religious freedom rights, or the restriction of religious liberty and liberty of conscience, anti-Catholicism, or anti-Catholic biases;
- The abuse of alcohol or the use of illegal narcotics or other controlled substances; and
- Violence or the use of force to resolve social, political or religious problems.
Must the Church’s clergy, religious and employees share the Church’s vision and witness the Catholic faith in their life and work?
Yes. Every member of the Church must stand before the world as a witness to the life and resurrection of the Lord Jesus. This is particularly important for those person who work and minister in the name of the Church. In our daily affairs and our work, we, as faithful disciples of the risen Christ, must be guided by a Christian conscience, since even in secular business there is no human activity that can be withdrawn from God’s dominion.
The CCIA, when in its role as an employer, expects all employees to be persons, who by word and deed, support and advocate the positions of the Catholic Church. We understand that employment by the Catholic Church in America is not for everyone, because there are people of good faith who disagree with our teachings and views.
Those unable to authentically witness the Catholic faith by their lives may wish to reflect and seek pastoral guidance before applying for employment or ministry in the Church.
Does the obligation to share the Church’s vision also pertain to employees who are not Catholic? Yes. As Catholics, we believe that our Faith is universal — that’s what the word “Catholic” means. Thus, even if a person is not Catholic he or she remains called by the Lord to stand before the world as a witness to Christ’s life and resurrection. Persons whose lives do not witness the teachings of the Catholic faith by virtue of their own objections or disbelief, or are unable to witness the Catholic faith by virtue of their lifestyle choices or public conduct, do not meet the basic criteria to work or minister in the name of the Church.
After you have carefully reflected on what is contained in this Pre-Application Statement, we invite you to complete the Acknowledgement and Applicant Questionnaire, if you are interested in seeking ordination, consecration, incardination or employment with the CCIA.
By signing and dating below, I hereby acknowledge that I have received and read the foregoing Pre-Application Statement of the CCIA. After reading and reflecting upon the teachings and beliefs of the Catholic Church, and the manner in which those matters impact both ordained and laity of the Diocese, I wish to apply for a position with the CCIA, with a full understanding of the religious nature of the CCIA as a religious organization. I understand the CCIA’s expectations that if my application results in my being hired or otherwise brought into religious life, I will be subject to standards of conduct that incorporate the teachings and beliefs of the Catholic Church as set forth in the Pre-Application Statement, and that these performance expectations will be a material condition of my employment or affiliation.