Can a priest give permission to have communion at an Episcopal church one time???

I have a nurse friend from work who will soon be confirmed in the Episcopal church. It’ll be a big event at the cathedral in Spokane, several hours drive from here. She’s really benefited from her involvement in this church, and I’m happy she’s grown spiritually. I was thinking of going to this event, making it an overnight trip. I would attend a Vigil Catholic Mass the evening before.

Can I ask my priest for permission to have communion for this one time event? I know people get their feelings hurt when you won’t have communion in their church, but for this special event it would be nice to share in my friend’s joy as a fellow Christian. I was wondering if he has the authority to suspend the rule about this for a special event.

Dear White,

Let’s get some perspective here. It is good that you are happy that your friend is involved in her church. However, you as a Catholic should know that for us she belongs to a heretical church and is about to receive an invalid sacrament. Further, to be in solidarity with her, you want to receive an invalid eucharist so that you won’t hurt anyone’s feelings. What does all this say about what you believe?

If you believe that the Catholic Church is the only one founded, not by Luther or Calvin or Henry VIII, but by our Lord, Jesus Christ Himself, how could you possibly want to make belief that this truth is untrue? This is precisely what you would be doing. No orthodox Catholic priest would give you such permission to sin—which is what you are actually asking.

You will do your friend more good by receiving the Eucharist validly in your own Church. You both are in my prayers.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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