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Code of Canon Law
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Art. 2. Chaplains
Can.564 A chaplain is a priest to whom is entrusted in a stable manner the pastoral care, at least in part, of some
community or particular group of the Christian faithful, which is to be exercised according to the norm of universal
and particular law.
Can.565 Unless the law provides otherwise or someone legitimately has special rights, a chaplain is appointed by the
local ordinary to whom it also belongs to install the one presented or to confirm the one elected.
Can.566 §1. A chaplain must be provided with all the faculties which proper pastoral care requires. In addition to
those which are granted by particular law or special delegation, a chaplain possesses by virtue of office the faculty
of hearing the confessions of the faithful entrusted to his care, of preaching the word of God to them, of
administering Viaticum and the anointing of the sick, and of conferring the sacrament of confirmation on those
who are in danger of death.
§2. In hospitals, prisons, and on sea journeys, a chaplain, moreover, has the faculty, to be exercised only in
those places, of absolving from latae sententiae censures which are neither reserved nor declared, without prejudice,
however, to the prescript of can. 976.
Can.567 §1. The local ordinary is not to proceed to the appointment of a chaplain to a house of a lay religious
institute without consulting the superior, who has the right to propose a specific priest after the superior has heard
§2. It is for the chaplain to celebrate or direct liturgical functions; nevertheless, he is not permitted to involve
himself in the internal governance of the institute.
Can.568 As far as possible, chaplains are to be appointed for those who are not able to avail themselves of the
ordinary care of pastors because of the condition of their lives, such as migrants, exiles, refugees, nomads, sailors.
Can.569 Military chaplains are governed by special laws.
Can.570 If a non-parochial church is connected to the seat of a community or group, the chaplain is to be the rector
of that church, unless the care of the community or of the church requires otherwise.
Can.571 In the exercise of his pastoral function, a chaplain is to preserve a fitting relationship with the pastor.
Can.572 In what pertains to the removal of a chaplain, the prescript of can. 563 is to be observed.