A Greek (phrourein) verb and a Latin (excubare) verb are found in early literature describing the duties of a Bishop. Excubare literally means 'to sleep out of doors'. These terms point to your bishop's duty to be a guard, a watchman. Not for him ... metaphorically ... the comfort of a soft mattress and a downy pillow; not for him to enjoy unbroken slumbers until his alarm-clock rouses him at 6.00 for his Office, Meditation, and Mass.
His duty is that of the Watchman, on the ramparts of the Holy City, his eyes keen to spot an approaching Enemy. Ideally, he is a Cerberus whose bite is every bit as bad as his bark, ready to savage those who attempt illicit entry into his Household. Or he climbs comscientiously up the high city tower from which his keen eye can detect hostile movement even on a distant horizon.
And don't forget another Greek verb, gregorein, a rather late, perhaps koine coinage from egeirein, meaning to Stay Awake. Have you noticed how often the Gospels offered for Confessor Bishops emphasise the episcopal duty to watch, vigilare? "Watch, for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come. ... if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up ... " "he commanded the doorkeeper (thuroros) to watch ..."
And the Lord's teaching is that the Coming of the Judge upon that Day will be like that of a Lord or a King coming unexpectedly to make a reckoning with his household officers.
Your Bishop's job, before everything else, is to keep you safe by Watching and Guarding, so that on the Day of the Lord he can present you, with all his Household, pure and undefiled, to the Judge.
Does your Bishop understand this? Does he do these things? When a Wolf starts sniffing around the sheepfold, is your bishop out there to confront him, brave, resolute, and fearless?
When yet another Satanic assault upon the Faith wafts across the airwaves from the Seven Hills, is your bishop out there in front, valiant for the Faith handed down through the Apostles, for the Depositum Fidei, insistent that, if Peter carelessly misspoke, he should clear away the confusion; that if the Vicar of Christ himself has actually fallen short of the Faith, he should purge himself of his Hypocrisy (synhypocrithesan ... tei hypocrisei are S Paul's words in Galatians).
Is your Bishop careful to keep his nose and his copy-book clean, or does he bear the marks of a man who is haunted by the thought that he does not know whether his Lord will come at Midnight, or in the Third Watch?
Dear Father. No.
Since at least the late 1940s, AmBishops and Popes have not applied discipline to protect Doctrine or the Sacraments.
In 1948, The American Bishops produced a document, Faith in Action (ABS got a copy of this via an archivist at Catholic University) that eviscerated Catholic Doctrine on State-Church relations and that document was cited by JFK when he ran for POTUS promising fealty to the will of the people rather than natural law and his Faith.
Pope Pius XII, despite repeated pleas from some faithful AmBishops, and even, occasionally Ottaviani,refused to correct the heretical Bishops and so he let the impression stand that Americanism is the new path the Catholic Church would move down.
That is the praxis now of progressivism - Catholic Church-State Doctrine has been blowed-up and, predictably, the growing public succoring of sodomy is happening.
ABS was learnt, a very long tine ago, that he is on his own.
He will defend the Faith but his Bishops won't.
It even got so bad in the Diocese of Portland, Maine (One Diocese for the entire state)that ABS had to picket the Chancery in Portland because the local"Church World" paper published a piece by a Notre Dame Priest that said Jesus was ignorant, sexually tempted and in error.
After about a week of picketing and distributing orthodox teachings on those points the Chancellor called ABS at home and said "All the priest here are laughing at you" and the next day the Bishop's spokesman told ABS, the Bishop agrees with the column."
We have a bishop in Pittsburgh who doesn't want to blog his copybook, who puts out messages a la The Wizard of Oz ..."Pay no attention to the man behind the curtains. Fracncis is changing nothing."
Parishes are condensed combined and we're told we're positioning ourselves for a successful financial future.
ABS I'm sorry you were so treated by the diocese.
St. Fulgentius has some very good sermons on this point. The bishop is the eye of the Church.
Dear Matthew. TY but ABS considered it a blessing.
BTW, the column in question was by Father Richard McBrien
We have about a half dozen bishops here in the US about which one could say yes. Strickland of Tyler TX, Tobin of Rhode Island (not to be confused with another bishop of the same name), Cordileone in San Francisco, Sample in Portland OR and a couple more whose names escape me at the moment. It has probably always been that way. Consider that only one of the original 12 stood by our Lord at his crucifixion.
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