Saturday, March 4, 2017
Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 252 - Part I.
(Youcat answer) In episcopal ordination the fullness of the sacrament of Holy Orders is conferred upon a priest. He is ordained a successor of the Apostles and enters the college of bishops. Together with the other bishops and the Pope, he is from now on responsible for the entire Church. In particular the Church appoints him to the offices of teaching, sanctifying, and governing.
A deepening through CCC
(CCC (CCC 1555) "Amongst those various offices which have been exercised in the Church from the earliest times the chief place, according to the witness of tradition, is held by the function of those who, through their appointment to the dignity and responsibility of bishop, and in virtue consequently of the unbroken succession going back to the beginning, are regarded as transmitters of the apostolic line" (LG 20). (CCC 1556) To fulfill their exalted mission, "the apostles were endowed by Christ with a special outpouring of the Holy Spirit coming upon them, and by the imposition of hands they passed on to their auxiliaries the gift of the Spirit, which is transmitted down to our day through episcopal consecration" (LG 21; cf. Acts 1:8; 2:4; Jn 20:22-23; 1 Tim 4:14; 2 Tim 1:6-7).
Reflecting and meditating
(Youcat comment) The episcopal ministry is the real pastoral ministry in the Church, for it goes back to the original witnesses to Jesus, the apostles, and continues the pastoral ministry of the apostles that was instituted by Christ. The Pope, too, is a BISHOP, but the first among them and the head of the college.
(CCC 1557) The Second Vatican Council "teaches… that the fullness of the sacrament of Holy Orders is conferred by episcopal consecration, that fullness namely which, both in the liturgical tradition of the Church and the language of the Fathers of the Church, is called the high priesthood, the acme (summa) of the sacred ministry" (LG 21 § 2).