Why do we refer to Mystical Rose as an oratory rather than a chapel?

Oratory comes from the latin, orare, which means to pray. Both are buildings that are set aside as a place for people to gather for prayer, worship, and the reception of the sacraments.Some people use chapel and oratory interchangeably, as they often fulfill the same purpose, but in a technical sense, they are different.

The sacraments of initiation, first communion, and matrimony are recorded in parish churches. This is what sets an oratory apart from a chapel. Oratories often functions the same way a parish church does in regards to record keeping. Before Mystical Rose was given the designation as an oratory, these sacraments were performed here but recorded at St. Patrick’s Church across the street. Since its designation as an oratory, Mystical Rose has been keeping its own sacramental records.

The designation “oratory” is granted by the bishop of a local diocese.