Pope Francis Describes Bishops at Their Best

Pope Francis greets Pittsburgh bishop during general audience at Vatican. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano)

In a speech to the Congregation for Bishops, Pope Francis said bishops should act not like ambitious corporate executives but as humble evangelists and men of prayer, willing to sacrifice everything for their flocks. “We don’t need a manager, the C.E.O. of a business, nor someone who shares our pettiness or low aspirations,” the pope said on Feb. 27. “We need someone who knows how to rise to the height from which God sees us, in order to guide us to him.” He stressed the importance of self-sacrifice in a bishop’s ministry, which he described as a kind of martyrdom. “The courage to die, the generosity to offer one’s own life and exhaust oneself for the flock are inscribed in the episcopate’s DNA,” he said. “The episcopate is not for itself but for the church, for the flock, for others, above all for those whom the world considers only worth throwing away.”

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