Letter to Vatican

I’ve heard that the postal service in Italy is pretty… bad. I need to send a letter to the CDWDS to get them to change abuses at my parish and there is no way I can purchase any sort of “return receipt” since this letter would be going out of the country.

Does anyone know of any other way I could ensure that the Vatican gets my letter? Or would it be okay to just send it, and trust that it gets there?

Has anyone had any experience with this?


Why can’t you just FedEx it?

That would be expensive. But if the OP can afford it, why not.

You do know, of course, that your bishop is the first go-to guy … right? The CDW gets tons of letters like yours but they’re not going to undermine the bishop.

Read through CUF’s Effective Lay Witness Protocol before taking such an action.

The Church firmly believes in the principle of subsidiarity: that which can be resolved at the lowest level should be resolved at the lowest level. If you try to circumvent the process, you might as well just save yourself the postage. The CDWDS isn’t going to mobilize the troops for every letter that passes over their desk if there is no documentation to back it up and prove that one has exhausted all other means of resolving the issue.

I lived in Rome for four months last year. And, it’s true. Italy has possibly the worst postal system on Earth. If you put a package in there, you have about a 50% chance of seeing it in six months and a 50% chance of never seeing it again.

Vatican City, however, has its own postal service. And, you know what? It’s one of the best in the world. After our first experience with PosteItalia, we would always walk down to St. Peter’s to drop letters in the mail. It worked very nicely.

So, you should be able to write directly to the Vatican without ever touching PosteItaliane. Just address it to an address within Vatican City, and don’t put “Roma, Italia” on the envelope. It will get there quickly. It will then very possibly be lost in the vast and inefficient Vatican bureaucracy, perhaps for just as long as it would have been lost in the Italian post… but it’ll get there safe, at least! :slight_smile:

I’m not sure about return receipt, but I’m not sure it’s necessary, given the Vatican’s postal efficiency. FedEx would have that feature, though, if you really wanted it.

Do follow the above poster’s advice and consult the Lay Activism document first. Very, very, very rarely does a matter like this need to be sent all the way to Rome, and they will virtually always refer the matter back to the local bishop, who has all authority in these matters. Unless your parish is ordaining womenpriests or something, you’re sending to the wrong address.

I can’t speak for Italy, but I was in France for my birthday and I’m STILL waiting for mail that was sent from the US to France.

In other words… don’t hold your breath for mail in Europe. :slight_smile:

If you wish to report abuses of the liturgy in your parish send the letter to the Bishop of your diocese. As we used to say in the cadets, make use of the chain-of-command.

To all who are encouraging the OP to contact his bishop first: he has already done this (and received an unsatisfying reply from someone on the archdiocesan staff). He also spoke and corresponded directly with the priests involved before writing to the archbishop. He’s doing this correctly.

They do have an international version of the certified letter. It cost my father $24. He was given a tracking number and the post office filled out an orange card. If I could, I would scan the card for y’all to show you what it looks like, but, it has our information on it.

What the folks at the CDWDS did was sign the back of the orange card and return it to us. Some time later, my father received a formal letter of acknowledgment from the CDWDS.

The OP can go by Fed-Ex, three-day international. Fed-Ex will give you a tracking number so that you can track it online.

In the OP’s case, there really is no need to follow the CUF protocol because he has already done that. The real protocol, in my opinion, has already been given to us by Redemptionis Sacramentum. The OP has already gone through the system.

I did not know that. Good to hear! :thumbsup:

Was this indicated in another thread? The OP doesn’t claim to have done this (at least not that I can see in this thread.)

Even if the OP had contacted the ordinary, the next step isn’t the Vatican, but AFAIK the Apostolic Nuncio. His name is Archbishop Pietro Sambi.

The OP is familiar to us from previous threads. See this one.

With all due respect, this is incorrect. The Nuncio has nothing to do in the process. RS clearly indicates that the next step is the CDWDS.

  1. The Apostolic See
    [181.] Whenever the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments receives at least a plausible notice of a delict or an abuse concerning the Most Holy Eucharist, it informs the Ordinary so that he may investigate the matter. When the matter turns out to be serious, the Ordinary should send to the same Dicastery as quickly as possible a copy of the acts of the inquiry that has been undertaken, and where necessary, the penalty imposed.

[182.] In more difficult cases the Ordinary, for the sake of the good of the universal Church in the care for which he too has a part by virtue of his sacred Ordination, should not fail to handle the matter, having previously taken advice from the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. For its part, this Congregation, on the strength of the faculties given to it by the Roman Pontiff, according to the nature of the case, will assist the Ordinary, granting him the necessary dispensations289 or giving him instructions or prescriptions, which he is to follow diligently.

  1. Complaints Regarding Abuses in Liturgical Matters
    [183.] In an altogether particular manner, let everyone do all that is in their power to ensure that the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist will be protected from any and every irreverence or distortion and that all abuses be thoroughly corrected. This is a most serious duty incumbent upon each and every one, and all are bound to carry it out without any favoritism.

[184.] Any Catholic, whether Priest or Deacon or lay member of Christ’s faithful, has the right to lodge a complaint regarding a liturgical abuse to the diocesan Bishop or the competent Ordinary equivalent to him in law, or to the Apostolic See on account of the primacy of the Roman Pontiff.290 It is fitting, however, insofar as possible, that the report or complaint be submitted first to the diocesan Bishop. This is naturally to be done in truth and charity.

The CDWDS acts with the authority of the Holy Father, so it is the appropriate congregation to address this matter because it is within their competency to do so.

Hence the AFAIK. No need to bite my head off.

Thanks for the information.

As Mark pointed out, I’ve already gone through all the “proper protocols”. :slight_smile:

I sent the letter, and purchased a return receipt for about $15. Thanks everyone for your responses!

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