Get this from a library! Directory for the pastoral ministry of bishops: Apostolorum successores. [Catholic Church. Congregatio pro Episcopis.]. Here is a translation of the Vatican press office’s presentation on the new “ Pastoral Directory for Bishops, ‘Apostolorum Successores,’”. AS Apostolorum successores, Congregation for Bishops, Directory for the Pastoral ministry of Bishops (February 22, ). Vatican City: Libreria Editrice.

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In fulfilling his mission, the diocesan Bishop should always remember that the community over which he presides is a community of faith, needing to be nourished by the Word of God. In particular, if circumstances so warrant, the Bishops of an ecclesiastical province may wish to arrange joint programmes for the ongoing formation of the clergy or to hold pastoral discussions about agreed guidelines on matters of interest throughout the territory.

Jesus willed the Twelve to be an undivided College with Peter as head, and apostolirum it was that they carried apowtolorum their mission as eye-witnesses of his resurrection, beginning from Jerusalem cf.

Where pastoral need so suggests, and apostolotum the permission of the Apostolic See, the Bishops of a neighbouring diocese, immediately subject to the Holy See, may become associated with joint initiatives.

In exercising the judicial function, the Bishop should keep in mind the following general criteria:. Totally new, in relation to the preceding Directory, is the third chapter on the spirituality and permanent formation of the Bishop in which, after referring to the sources of episcopal spirituality, the Bishop is reminded apostolroum his path toward holiness in pastoral charity.

In the latter case, these doctrinal statements must obtain the recognitio of the Holy See before they can successoges published. A special responsibility for the unity of the Church falls to the metropolitan Archbishop in his relation to the suffragan dioceses and their Bishops He should be visibly poor, he should be tireless in giving alms and he should lead a modest life which, without detracting from the dignity of his office, nevertheless takes account of the socio-economic conditions of his flock.

Also addressed are important topics such as the central character of Sunday, the importance of popular piety, the decorum of sacred places.

In such cases, they have a deliberative vote This constant spiritual formation enables the Bishop to animate his pastoral activity with an authentic spirit of holiness, tirelessly promoting and sustaining the universal call to holiness.

He should promote unity in faith, in love and in discipline, so that the diocese is aware that it forms a vital part of the whole People of God.

The Directory underlines the central character of the Liturgy in the life of the diocese, especially of the Eucharistic celebration.

The Bishop will realize that he too has a duty to attend to his ongoing formation, a duty he shares with all the faithful whatever their age or condition in life, whatever their level of responsibility in the Church Moreover, the Bishops are free to invite other clerics, religious and laypersons, but should ensure that their number does not exceed half the number of those present by right Such action corresponds to the need, particularly evident today, for Bishops to provide for the common good of particular Churches through an agreed and well coordinated policy As successors of the Apostles, Bishops receive the grace and the responsibility to safeguard the mark of apostolicity in the Church.


The Dogmatic Constitution Lumen Gentium proposes a number of images which illustrate the mystery of the Church and highlight its characteristic marks, revealing the indissoluble bond that unites the People of God with Christ. Regarding the lay faithful, the Bishop will promote communion by incorporating them into the unity of the particular Church, according to their own vocation and mission, recognizing their just autonomy, listening to their advice and evaluating with great care legitimate requests regarding their spiritual needs He should be able to say with Saint Paul: The Bishop, in guiding his diocese, should observe the principles of justice and legality, knowing that respect for the rights of all in the Church requires that everyone, including himself, be subject to canon law.

These principles transcend time and place. The Bishop teacher of the faith and announcer of the Word munus docendi. When the law prescribes that the Bishop should take action on a particular matter, or apostooorum the interested apotsolorum legitimately presents a petition or a recourse, the decree should be issued within three months When circumstances so suggest, the Holy See may appoint a coadjutor Bishop As a particular form of apostolic action in the international sphere, the Holy See participates as a full member of the principal international organizations and actively contributes to the various Conferences held under their auspices.

“Apostolorum Successores”: New directory for Bishops

Those priests too, who, with the consent of the competent authority, exercise their ministry at supradiocesan or national level such apostolroum the superiors and professors of interdiocesan seminaries and ecclesiastical faculties, or the officials of the Episcopal Conferencecooperate with the Bishops by means of a genuinely pastoral activity which deserves special attention on the part of the Church It was produced after wide consultation, taking note of suggestions and comments received from various diocesan Bishops and from some Bishops Emeritus.

Trent to Vatican II, ed. The Legate of the Roman Pontiffwhile he is not a member of the Episcopal Conference and has no right to vote, is invited to the opening session of the Episcopal Conference, according to the Statutes of each episcopal assembly.

They have been consecrated by him through baptism, so as to offer spiritual sacrifices through everything they do. Some members of the Body of Christ, however, are consecrated by the sacrament of holy orders to exercise the priestly ministry.

Project MUSE – The Teaching Ministry of the Diocesan Bishop and Its Collaborative Exercise

The Bishop should therefore look upon the auxiliary as succesxores brother and should involve him in his pastoral projects, decisions and in all diocesan initiatives, so that through their mutual exchange of ideas and opinions, they may proceed in unity and harmony in their intentions and endeavours.

The Conference may invite non-members to attend its meetings, but successores in certain cases and only with a consultative vote These two teaching missions, of the Son and Holy Spirit, are intimately interrelated and mutually interdependent.


If these measures are unsuccessful or insufficient, in view of the gravity of the misconduct or the obstinacy of the cleric, the Bishop should impose the penalty of suspension according to the law or, in extreme cases provided for in canonical norms, he should initiate a apostolprum process aimed at dismissal from the clerical state The Church does not only signify intimate union with God and the unity of the whole human race, but she is the effective sign of this unity and is therefore a sacrament of salvation Conscious of his responsibility for the entire ministry of the Word in his particular Churchwhere he has been commissioned apostolorim proclaim the faith, to teach with authority and aposrolorum bear witness to divine and catholic truth, the Bishop has an obligation to deepen his intellectual preparation through personal study, with a serious commitment to keeping abreast of cultural developments.

The Apostles, with Peter as head, are the foundation of the Church of Christ, and their names are written on the foundations of the heavenly Jerusalem cf. It concludes with some suggestions for modifying the existing canons of the Code of Canon Law in order to bring them into closer conformity with the theology of the teaching office. The pastoral mission of the Apostolic College is perpetuated in the episcopal College, just as the primatial office of Peter is perpetuated in the Roman Pontiff.

The sanctifying mission of the Bishop requires him to live deeply the new life of baptismal grace and the pastoral ministry to which he has been called by the Holy Spirit, conforming apoatolorum ever more closely, in a spirit apostolprum continual conversion, to the mind and heart of Jesus Christ.

Fraternal meetings with the Roman Pontiff and with his closest collaborators in the Roman Curia offer the Bishop a privileged opportunity not only to give an account of the situation of his diocese and its needs, but also to learn more about the hopes, the joys and the difficulties of the universal Church and to receive helpful counsel and guidance on the problems of his flock. This is why Bishops, generation after generation, are called to safeguard and to hand on Sacred Scripture and to promote the Traditiothat is, the proclamation of the one Gospel and the one faith, in complete fidelity to the teaching of the Apostles.

In his life and works, in his death and resurrection, Jesus united himself with aposyolorum, gave himself up for us, and made known to us the ways of God. As a prudent Pastor, the Bishop should show himself ready to assume the responsibilities of his office, to enter into dialogue with the faithful, to exercise his powers, but also to respect the rights of others in the Church.