A few words on bishops

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I'm reading the 2nd volume of Warren Carroll's History of Christendom series (which I'm enjoying very much--though it is certainly pointing out how much I DON'T know. Just goes to show you that what I don't know can fill shelves of books! :-P)

In reading about St. John Chrysostom, here are a couple of his writings on bishops:

The bishop ought to have as thorough a knowledge of the world as those who live in close association with it, yet at the same time his spirit ought to be even more free than that of the monk who lives on a mountain. The austerities which a monk can undertake depend on his physical constitution; but the virtues of the bishop belong to the soul and may be developed in any circumstances . . . Great is the office of a bishop and it needs much wisdom and courage, for Christ teaches us that we must lay down our lives for the sheep: we must never desert them but stand up against the wolf.

And then again:

Do not give your alms to any leader of the Church who lives in plenty, even though he be a devout man; bestow them rather on one who is in need, even if he be less religious. For that is the will of Christ, when he says, "When you give a dinner or a party do not invite your friends or relatives or rich neighbors, lest they return the invitation and you receive a recompense. Instead, invite the poor, the crippled, the blind who are unable to repay you." . . . I am telling you that he who lives in comfort and yet accepts alms is not a religious man.

Well, you can certainly see why he developed enemies and was hounded out of Constantinople.....

It also reminded me of a sculpture done by John Collier, that sits outside a bishop's office in Greensburg, Pennsylvania. It's called Christ, The Good Shepherd. It must be a very humbling thing to look at every day:


okay, this prolly isn't a great subject (bestow them rather on one who is in need, even if he be less religious) to advertise during the stewardship campaign...
but, whoa! what a powerful work of art.

Isn't it interesting...the more we learn, the more we realize how much we don't know.

His series of history books are excellent and a real eye opener.

I wonder how he's doing health-wise, don't hear much about him since he left the EWTN forum. I know he said he'd like to have enough time to finish his series, but there's a long road from the 18th century thru the 20th, and I think he had a stroke.



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This page contains a single entry by MamaT published on May 12, 2004 7:24 AM.

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