Faculties can only be used in favour of members of the Church who are not disqualified by ecclesiastical penalties or censures.
Hence in marriage cases where one of the contracting parties is a non-Catholic, the dispensation is given directly to the Catholic.
( Latin Facultates ) In law, a faculty is the authority, privilege, or permission, to perform an act or function.In a broad sense, a faculty is a certain power, whether based on one's own right, or received as a favour from another, of validly or lawfully doing some action.Petitions addressed to the Propaganda (the same is true of most of the congregations, at least to expedite matters), should be in Latin, Italian, or French.The Sacred Pœnitentiaria will accept communications in any modern tongue.In a more restricted sense, it means the conferring on a subordinate, by a superior who enjoys jurisdiction in the external forum, of certain ecclesiastical rights which are denied him by common law ; to act, namely, in the external or internal forum validly or lawfully, or at least safely.
Faculties, then, will be classified, first of all, by reason of the object to which they relate, inasmuch as; — Secondly, faculties, by reason of their source, are Apostolic, episcopal, or regular.
Graces thus received from the Holy See do not restrict the prerogatives which the one favoured may already enjoy by virtue of ordinary jurisdiction or other title ( gratia non nocet gratiœ ).
The purpose of the Holy See is to make a concession, not to lessen one's authority.
While the recent legislation of the Church has sought to prevent conflict of authority between the various Roman Congregations, tribunals and offices, yet it will happen at times that two or more of these bodies will have jurisdiction in the same case.
A petition which has been rejected by one of the congregations may not be presented lawfully to another; a favour granted by another congregation, the previous refusal of the grant being concealed, is null and void.
In the United States any matrimonial dispensation may be conceded to one actually outside his own diocese, if be has not acquired at least a quasi-domicile elsewhere (Holy Office per Propaganda, 20 Dec., 1894).