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Julianne Wallace Answers:
The USCCB has released a statement regarding flags in Church. Officially, there are no rules regarding state or national flags in the Church and the USCCB leaves it to the local bishop’s discretion on when, or if, to display flags in Church. Remember , in the Liturgy, we celebrate the living, dying and rising of Christ and all the symbols present in our Church and sanctuary lead us deeper into this Paschal Mystery. The presence of a national or state flag does not lead us deeper into the Paschal Mystery of Christ and therefore, its presence in the worship space should be strongly discouraged. At funerals, when a US Flag drapes the coffin, the Rite of Christian Burial says that any flag displayed over the coffin must be removed before the entrance ritual into the Church (no. 38 and 132). There is also an official US Flag Code that states whenever a flag is displayed in a Church it must be in a position of superior prominence (#175 K). The Archdiocese of Los Angeles suggests putting the flag in a vestibule of a Church, where it can have prominence without distracting people from entering more deeply into the Paschal Mystery.