I never thought to post this question here, but I have come across an interesting situation and I don’t know if there is anything that can be done about it. A few years ago, when my daughter was baptized, I had to go to a local parish to pick up my brother’s baptism/confirmation record so that he could serve as her Godfather. When I got there, I noticed a sign in both English and Spanish indicating that another local church called “Cathedral of St. Matthew” was warned against and that it is not a diocesan church and not recognized by the Catholic Church and sacraments received there are not recognized by the Catholic Church.
Now, by all appearances, this is a “Catholic Church.” I have been there, my sister in law received her confirmation there and my newphew was baptized there. The mass is conducted just like a Catholic mass and the priests wear a collar and robes just like Catholic priests. It used to have a sign out front saying "Catholic" in Spanish, but it has been changed to "Apostolic Catholic" now.
The problem that I have, is that it is located in a very Hispanic area, and the majority of the attendees probably have NO IDEA that they are not attending a Catholic church. I tried to explain it to my mother in law, but she didn’t seem to understand how it could be a Catholic church (in practice) that wasn’t truly Catholic (i.e.-recognized).
My concern is that there are probably well over 1,000 people who attend this ‘church’ every week who will later find that their children’s baptisms and other sacraments are not valid. Is there anything that can be done? If so…who do I call? Apparently the diocese already knows about it hence the sign hanging in the ‘real’ parish.
Here is the website so you can see for yourself what it looks like inside and how many people attend: saintmatthewscathedral.org/index.htm