Saturday, May 21, 2016
Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 144 - Part II.
(Youcat answer - repeated) Bishops have responsibility for the local Church that is entrusted to them and a share in the responsibility for the whole Church. They exercise their authority in communion with one another and for the benefit of the whole Church under the leadership of the Pope.
A deepening through CCC
(CCC 896) The Good Shepherd ought to be the model and "form" of the bishop's pastoral office. Conscious of his own weaknesses, "the bishop… can have compassion for those who are ignorant and erring. He should not refuse to listen to his subjects whose welfare he promotes as of his very own children.... The faithful... should be closely attached to the bishop as the Church is to Jesus Christ, and as Jesus Christ is to the Father" (LG 27 § 2): Let all follow the bishop, as Jesus Christ follows his Father, and the college of presbyters as the apostles; respect the deacons as you do God's law. Let no one do anything concerning the Church in separation from the bishop (St. Ignatius of Antioch, Ad Smyrn. 8, 1: Apostolic Fathers, II/2, 309).
Reflecting and meditating
(Youcat comment) Bishops must first of all be apostles—faithful witnesses of Jesus, who personally called them to follow him and then sent them. So they bring Christ to mankind and mankind to Christ. This happens through their preaching, the celebration of the sacraments, and their governance of the Church. As a successor of the apostles, a bishop exercises his ministry by virtue of his own apostolic authority; he is not an agent or a sort of assistant to the Pope. Yet he acts with and under the Pope.
(CCC 938) The Bishops, established by the Holy Spirit, succeed the apostles. They are "the visible source and foundation of unity in their own particular Churches" (LG 23).