Fr. Gerald E. Murray: What Are Bishops Supposed to Teach?

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*Image: A Tedious Conference by Francesco Brunery, c. 1900 [Musap – Fondazione Circolo Artistico Politecnico Onlus, Naples, Italy]

By Fr. Gerald E. Murray, The Catholic Thing, Feb. 17, 2022

The Rev. Gerald E. Murray, J.C.D. is a canon lawyer and the pastor of Holy Family Church in New York City.

Note: TCT Editor-in-Chief Robert Royal will join Fr. Gerald Murray and Raymond Arroyo (the Papal Posse) on EWTN’s The World Over this evening at 8:00 PM ET. They will be discussing recent changes that Pope Francis has announced  for the Roman Curia, the growing efforts by Catholic clergy in Europe and America to accept homosexuality, and various other developments in the Church and the world. Consult local listing for broadcast times. The World Over episodes are usually also available on the EWTN YouTube channel shortly after initial airing.


What is a Catholic bishop supposed to teach? The Oath of Fidelity on Assuming an Office to be Exercised in the Name of the Church supplies a succinct answer: “In fulfilling the charge entrusted to me in the name of the Church, I shall hold fast to the deposit of faith in its entirety; I shall faithfully hand it on and explain it, and I shall avoid any teachings contrary to it.”

What are the qualities that are required in a man being considered for promotion to the episcopate? Canon 378, §1, 1º answers thus: “To be a suitable candidate for the episcopate it is required that he be outstanding in strong faith, good morals, piety, zeal for souls, wisdom, prudence and human virtues, and possess those other gifts which equip him to fulfill the office in question.” …

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