Transfer of Ascription

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I am ascribed to an Eastern Catholic Church sui iuris and want to change my ascription to the Latin Catholic Church sui iuris. What do I need to do?

Begin the process by talking to the pastor at the Latin parish which you attend. He has full details of what is needed, and will help guide you through the transfer of ascription. Together, you will put together a petition file that will be sent to the bishop. This file will include:

  • Your letter of petition, addressed to the Bishop of Arlington
  • Your pastor’s supporting letter of attest
  • Newly issued sacramental records (baptism, chrismation, marriage, etc.)

A checklist of documents for the petition file can be found here. Your pastor has a copy of this checklist.

I am ascribed to the Latin Catholic Church sui iuris and want to change my ascription to an Eastern Catholic Church sui iuris. What do I need to do? 

The process is basically identical to that described in Questions 2 and 3, but your letter of petition and your pastor’s letter of attest will be addressed to the local bishop of the Eastern Church sui iuris to which you want to be ascribed, instead of to the Bishop of Arlington. 

How do I know to which Church sui iuris I am ascribed? 

Your Church of ascription may not be the Church in which you practice. Your pastor will be able to help you understand the rules governing ascription, and you may find this flow chart a helpful starting point.

Once my petition file is sent to the bishop, what do I do next?

There will be a waiting period while the bishops of the two Churches sui iuris (the one to which you are currently ascribed and the one to which you wish to be ascribed) prayerfully consider your petition. Provided that they both assent to the transfer, your parish priest will then be informed. Please note that receiving the assent of the two bishops does not complete the change of ascription. For the change of ascription to be complete, you will need to speak out loud, in front of the priest and two witnesses, a statement declaring your change of ascription. A written copy of the declaration should then be signed and sent to the Chancery. Your pastor will have the proper form for this declaration on hand. Remember it is by this positive act of your own will, manifested outwardly, that the change of ascription is effected

What should my letter of petition include?

In your letter of petition you should describe your sacramental history (where and when you were baptized, confirmed, married, etc.), your present religious practices (where and when you currently attend church and receive the Sacraments, how long this has been your practice), and your reasons for desiring a change of ascription. You may find it helpful to discuss these reasons with your pastor.