Phoenix Catholic Priest Forced To Resign After Performing THOUSANDS Of Baptisms Wrong

Phoenix Catholic Priest Forced To Resign After Performing THOUSANDS Of Baptisms Wrong

A Catholic priest was forced to resign from a church in Arizona after the Vatican ruled that he botched thousands of baptisms using the wrong wording over a 25-year period.

Father Andres Arango stepped down from his post at St. Gregory Catholic Church in Phoenix this month after discovering he used the “wrong formula” that invalidated baptisms. He previously worked in churches in Brazil and San Diego.

Instead of saying “I baptize you” – which invokes the power of God – as required by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Arango said “we baptize you”, which refers to the community.

The use of the incorrect wording invalidated all the baptisms Arango performed between his ordination in 1995 and June 2021. And, as a consequence, it can also invalidate subsequent confirmations and the Eucharist. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix said some marriages could be affected, but did not specify how.

He will now work full-time offering spiritual guidance to Catholics whose baptisms have been invalidated so that he can baptize them again.

The church said the number of invalid baptisms was in the thousands, but did not elaborate on DailyMail.com exactly how many Arango performed.

In 2020, the Vatican issued a doctoral note clarifying that baptisms performed using the formula “We baptize you in the name of the Father and the Son of the Holy Spirit” are not valid.

Church leaders in the Roman Catholic Diocese investigated their religious leaders after the memo was released and found last month that Father Arango had performed baptisms incorrectly. This included baptisms in his previous parishes in Brazil and San Diego.

Pictured, Arango is baptized on October 1, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona.  Father Arango stepped down from his post at Saint Gregory Catholic Church in Phoenix this month after he said he used the

Pictured, Arango is baptized on October 1, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. Father Arango stepped down from his post at Saint Gregory Catholic Church in Phoenix this month after he said he used the “wrong formula” that invalidated baptisms. He previously worked in churches in Brazil and San Diego.

In his letter of resignation, Father Arango apologized to those affected by his mistake and asked the community for

In his letter of resignation, Father Arango apologized to those affected by his mistake and asked the community for “prayers, forgiveness and understanding”.

After the Vatican’s clarification, other priests working in Catholic dioceses in the United States realized that they had also been incorrectly baptized by the priests.

For example, shortly after becoming a priest in the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City in 2020, Father Zachary Boazman watched a video of his 1992 baptism and realized that the wording was incorrect.

According to the Diocese of Oklahoma City, he was re-ordained after being discovered.

Arango joined St. Gregory in 2017 and has previously worked at other temples in Arizona, including St. Anne’s Roman Catholic Parish in Gilbert and St. Jerome’s Catholic Church in Phoenix.

He previously served as a pastor in Brazil and is the former director of the Newman Center at San Diego State University.

Father Andres Arango stepped down from his post at Saint Gregory Catholic Church in Phoenix this month after discovering he had used the

Father Andres Arango stepped down from his post at Saint Gregory Catholic Church in Phoenix this month after discovering he had used the “wrong formula” that invalidated baptisms he had performed over the past 25 years. He previously worked in churches in Brazil and San Diego.

In a letter announcing his resignation, he apologized to those affected by his mistake and asked for “prayers, forgiveness and understanding” from the community.

“I am saddened to learn that I have performed invalid baptisms throughout my entire ministry as a priest, regularly using the wrong formula,” Arango said. “I deeply regret my mistake and how it has affected so many people in your ward and elsewhere.

“With the help of the Holy Spirit and in fellowship with the Diocese of Phoenix, I will devote my energy and full time to service to help fix this and heal those affected.”

The diocese said that Arango remains a priest with a good reputation, and the situation did not deprive him of the right to pursue his vocation and ministry.

Baptism, considered essential to salvation in the Catholic community, is the first of the three sacraments of initiation.

Arango joined St. Gregory Catholic Church (pictured) in 2017 and has previously worked at other temples in Arizona, including St. Anne's Roman Catholic Parish in Gilbert and St. Jerome's Catholic Church in Phoenix.

Arango joined St. Gregory Catholic Church (pictured) in 2017 and has previously worked at other temples in Arizona, including St. Anne’s Roman Catholic Parish in Gilbert and St. Jerome’s Catholic Church in Phoenix.

Phoenix Diocese Bishop Thomas J. Olmstead (pictured) said he did not believe Arango sought to intentionally harm or deceive the congregation.

Phoenix Diocese Bishop Thomas J. Olmstead (pictured) said he did not believe Arango sought to intentionally harm or deceive the congregation.

Those whose baptisms were invalid may have to repeat the second and third sacraments—confirmation and Eucharist—after a second, valid baptism.

It’s unclear how the situation could affect marriages, but the diocese said it could.

‘May be!’ says in the statement. “Unfortunately, there is no clear answer. There are many variables when it comes to valid marriages and the Tribunal is here to help.”

Phoenix Diocese Bishop Thomas J. Olmstead said he did not believe Arango sought to intentionally harm or deceive parishioners.

“On behalf of our local church, I also sincerely regret that this mistake has led to the violation of the sacred life of a number of believers,” Olmsted said in a statement.

“That’s why I promise to take all necessary steps to make things right for all those affected.”

An online petition calls for Arango to stay in the church.

“Catholics are taught that God forgives, loves all, and shows compassion to all,” the petition reads. “It is important that the Diocese of Phoenix emphasizes these virtues and shows its faithful what it really means to be a Catholic.”

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