Is a monsignor allowed to do that?


#1

I am returning to the Church after being apart since childhood. There is a major stumbling block in my way. My husband and I met with the parish priest about it. Though I greatly respect and admire this man, I wasn't comfortable discussing it with him, thus I decided to give up on the idea of returning at all. Not hearing back from the priest on some paperwork I needed, I felt that I had made the right decision to abandon the idea of re-verting.

Giving up made me miserable and I cried for days; prayed too. As I prayed it came to me that I should try and contact the monsignor, who was the priest at our parish many years ago and someone that my husband not only knew but thought very highly of. I contacted the monsignor via email. This was much easier for me because I could pour out my whole story to him without being face to face, so I wasn't going to get all tongue-tied and tearful the way I was when I tried to talk to the priest. The monsignor works in the area of vocations now, but is vicar general. The monsignor replied to my email from his phone, he told me he was on his way to a seminary, but promised to write more later (when he had access to a computer) and promised to help me. He asked me to continue going to Mass and RCIA while we worked on it and I have. That was the last I heard from him.

About a week later I heard from our parish priest and he is (pardon the expression) gung-ho to help me now. Following my heart, I decided to share with the priest what I had told the monsignor, but by writing it out. I'm painfully shy and socially awkward and writing comes easier to me than speaking.

The thing is, I can't understand why I never heard back from the monsignor and why the priest suddenly stepped in to help. Could the monsignor have contacted the priest and told him my story? In his reply to me the monsignor had told me that it was my story to tell or not tell and that he would hold what I told him in strictest confidence. I believe him, but I can't quite understand why things changed. I am growing more and more comfortable with the priest now and I feel that's as it should be, but I can't help but feeling there's something going on behind the scenes.


#2

It would seem to me that only thing going on “behind the scenes” is that the Vicar General contacted the pastor and asked him to be helpful. IOW, things seem to have “changed” with the pastor because the VG was in contact with him. Since he (the VG) told you whatever it was you had to say would be kept in confidence, I would take him at his word. And I wouldn’t worry about not having heard back from the VG yet. That position is notoriously busy. But you might want to follow-up with him at some point, just to say “thank you” and that things are moving along now. :slight_smile:


#3

That’s kind of what I thought too. Trust doesn’t come easy for me (which all goes back to the stumbling block) but I did take the VG at his word.

I know things are working out as they should - the priest should be the one I turn to for help with this and by him making the first move it has helped me feel more at ease with sharing my story with him; even if I did have to do it in writing. I have made it clear to the priest that it wasn’t my lack of respect for him that kept me from telling him first, it’s my failing not his. I do intend to follow up with the VG by letting him know I am moving forward.

Thank you for the reply.


#4

Be at Peace.

Welcome back to the Church.

Sometimes we come up with many possibilities of what may have happened, yet unless we speak with the individuals we don’t really know the answers.

I expect Msgr. respected your story.

Pray for being able to be at peace.

God gives us the ability to trust others and to know when to be cautious. Maybe you can focus in on each place you have difficulty with trust and take another look at that specific circumstance.

Are you applying situations to the past un-necessarily to the present circumstance - thus unable to take a honest look at the current situation? (I’m talking about any situation in general when you find it hard to trust.)

Are you able to tune into your “gut feelings” of what is real at the moment?

Your “gut feeling” often helps you know when not to trust - how ever you also need to learn if you are feeling your instinct for the current situation or if you have confused a past experience.

It may take awhile to learn to separate the past from a current situation - but with focus you can evaluate each situation and begin to place trust where it should be and to be cautious where you should be cautious.

May God give you peace that you are on the right path on your faith journey.


#5

Welcome back, and glad there are those working to help you.

I suspect that if any information changed hands it was along the lines of "one of the people at your parish could really use your help," and not the sharing of any details. It seems unlikely to me that a priest would pass around private information.


#6

[quote="kdkkdt, post:1, topic:344970"]
I am returning to the Church after being apart since childhood. There is a major stumbling block in my way. My husband and I met with the parish priest about it. Though I greatly respect and admire this man, I wasn't comfortable discussing it with him, thus I decided to give up on the idea of returning at all. Not hearing back from the priest on some paperwork I needed, I felt that I had made the right decision to abandon the idea of re-verting.

Giving up made me miserable and I cried for days; prayed too. As I prayed it came to me that I should try and contact the monsignor, who was the priest at our parish many years ago and someone that my husband not only knew but thought very highly of. I contacted the monsignor via email. This was much easier for me because I could pour out my whole story to him without being face to face, so I wasn't going to get all tongue-tied and tearful the way I was when I tried to talk to the priest. The monsignor works in the area of vocations now, but is vicar general. The monsignor replied to my email from his phone, he told me he was on his way to a seminary, but promised to write more later (when he had access to a computer) and promised to help me. He asked me to continue going to Mass and RCIA while we worked on it and I have. That was the last I heard from him.

About a week later I heard from our parish priest and he is (pardon the expression) gung-ho to help me now. Following my heart, I decided to share with the priest what I had told the monsignor, but by writing it out. I'm painfully shy and socially awkward and writing comes easier to me than speaking.

The thing is, I can't understand why I never heard back from the monsignor and why the priest suddenly stepped in to help. Could the monsignor have contacted the priest and told him my story? In his reply to me the monsignor had told me that it was my story to tell or not tell and that he would hold what I told him in strictest confidence. I believe him, but I can't quite understand why things changed. I am growing more and more comfortable with the priest now and I feel that's as it should be, but I can't help but feeling there's something going on behind the scenes.

[/quote]

it sounds like the Monsignor who looks to be a very busy man and not able to personally help you passed it on to a priest who he thought could help you personally or is available to do so. You seem very sensitive but it appears like you might be over reacting and you are being offered help that is needed and not ignored. People forget that priest are very busy and if this Monsignor is a vicar and works for the seminar, I would wager he couldn't met or help you personally but wanted to and passed the email on. while you may be extremely shy and sensitive and decided to write it out in an email, you should realize that the shortcoming with an email that may contain sensitive topics is not necessarily fool proof in confidentiality.


#7

[quote="robwar, post:6, topic:344970"]
it sounds like the Monsignor who looks to be a very busy man and not able to personally help you passed it on to a priest who he thought could help you personally or is available to do so. You seem very sensitive but it appears like you might be over reacting and you are being offered help that is needed and not ignored. People forget that priest are very busy and if this Monsignor is a vicar and works for the seminar, I would wager he couldn't met or help you personally but wanted to and passed the email on. while you may be extremely shy and sensitive and decided to write it out in an email, you should realize that the shortcoming with an email that may contain sensitive topics is not necessarily fool proof in confidentiality.

[/quote]

Yes I am very sensitive. It's how the Lord made me and I don't see the need or want to change. Being extra sensitive is what makes me so good at what I do - animal rescue and helping those less fortunate than myself, namely veterans and the elderly.

The monsignor did tell me that he would help me, even if we had to "meet in person" to do it. The confidentiality part of the email is a moot point in the here and now, as I have already shared what I sent in the email to the VG with the parish priest.


#8

The important thing is that you will be one again with Jesus. Keep targeting that until it happens and you will be fine. Sometimes things don’t work out exactly the way we envision them to, but as long as it works out.

May God bless and keep you. May God’s face shine on you. May God be kind to you and give you peace.


#9

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