Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Saint November 6 : St. Leonard : Patron of Political prisoners, Prisoners, Women in labor, and Horses

St. Leonard
Feast: November 6
Feast Day:
November 6
Patron of:
political prisoners, imprisoned people, prisoners of war, and captives, women in labor, as well as horses

St Leonard, or Lienard, was a French nobleman of great reputation in the court of Clovis I, and in the flower of his age was converted to the faith by St. Remigius, probably after the battle of Tolbiac. Being instructed in the obligations of our heavenly warfare, wherein the prize of the victory is an assured crown of immortal glory, he resolved to lay aside all worldly pursuits, quitted the court, and became a constant disciple of St. Remigius. The holy instructions and example of that saint made every day deeper impressions upon his tender soul, and Leonard seemed to have inherited the very spirit of his master, and to be animated with the same simplicity, disinterestedness, modesty, zeal, and charity. He preached the faith some time; but finding it very difficult to resist the king's importunities, who would needs call him to court, and burning with a desire of giving himself up entirely to the exercises of penance and contemplation, he retired privately into the territory of Orleans, where St. Mesmin or Maximin governed the monastery of Micy (called afterwards St. Mesmin's), which his uncle St. Euspicius had founded, two leagues from the city, in 508. In this house St. Leonard took the religious habit and inured himself to the fervent practices of regular discipline under the direction of St. Mesmin and of St. Lie or Laetus, a holy monk of that house, who afterwards died a hermit.
St. Leonard himself aspiring after a closer solitude, with the leave of St. Mesmin left his monastery, travelled through Berry, where he converted many idolaters, and coming into Limousin, chose for his retirement a forest four leagues from Limoges. Here, in a place called Nobiliac, he built himself an oratory, lived on wild herbs and fruits, and had for some time no other witness of his penance and virtues but God alone. His zeal and devotion sometimes carried him to the neighbouring churches, and some who by his discourses were inflamed with a desire of imitating his manner of life joined him in his desert, and formed a community which, in succeeding times, out of devotion to the saint's memory, became a flourishing monastery, called first Noblat, afterwards St. Leonard le Noblat. The reputation of his sanctity and miracles being spread very wide, the king bestowed on him and his fellow-hermits a considerable part of the forest where they lived. The saint, even before he retired to Micy, had been most remarkable for his charity toward captives and prisoners, and he laid himself out with unwearied zeal in affording them both corporeal and spiritual help and comfort, and he obtained of the governors the liberty of many. This was also the favourite object of his charity after he had discovered himself to the world in Limousin, and began to make frequent excursions to preach and instruct the people of that country. It is related that some were miraculously delivered from their chains by his prayers, and that the king, out of respect for his eminent sanctity, granted him a special privilege of sometimes setting prisoners at liberty; which about that time was frequently allowed to certain holy bishops and others. But the saint's chief aim and endeavours in this charitable employment were to bring malefactors and all persons who fell under this affliction to a true sense of the enormity of their sins, and to a sincere spirit of compunction and penance, and a perfect reformation of their lives. When he had filled up the measure of his good works, his labours were crowned with a happy death about the year 559, according to the new Paris Breviary. Many great churches in England of which he is the titular saint, and our ancient calendars, show his name to have been formerly no less famous in England. In a list of holidays published at Worcester in 1240, St. Leonard's festival is ordered to be kept a half-holiday, with an obligation of hearing mass and a prohibition of labour except that of the plough. He was particularly invoked in favour of prisoners, and several miracles are ascribed to him.

Saint November 5 : Venerable Solanus Casey : Franciscan Capuchin Priest

American Catholic (Image CassiePeaDesigns): Venerable Solanus Casey (1870-1957) Barney Casey became one of Detroit’s best-known priests even though he was not allowed to preach formally or to hear confessions! Barney came from a large family in Oak Grove, Wisconsin. At the age of 21, and after he had worked as a logger, a hospital orderly, a streetcar operator and a prison guard, he entered St. Francis Seminary in Milwaukee—where he found the studies difficult. He left there and, in 1896, joined the Capuchins in Detroit, taking the name Solanus. His studies for the priesthood were again arduous. On July 24, 1904, he was ordained, but because his knowledge of theology was judged to be weak, Father Solanus was not given permission to hear confessions or to preach. A Franciscan Capuchin who knew him well said this annoying restriction "brought forth in him a greatness and a holiness that might never have been realized in any other way."
During his 14 years as porter and sacristan in Yonkers, New York, the people there recognized him as a fine speaker. "For, though he was forbidden to deliver doctrinal sermons," writes his biographer, James Derum, "he could give inspirational talks, or feverinos, as the Capuchins termed them" (18:96). His spiritual fire deeply impressed his listeners. Father Solanus served at parishes in Manhattan and Harlem before returning to Detroit, where he was porter and sacristan for 20 years at St. Bonaventure Monastery.
Every Wednesday afternoon he conducted well-attended services for the sick. A co-worker estimates that on the average day 150 to 200 people came to see Father Solanus in the front office. Most of them came to receive his blessing; 40 to 50 came for consultation. Many people considered him instrumental in cures and other blessings they received. Father Solanus’ sense of God’s providence inspired many of his visitors. "Blessed be God in all his designs" was one of his favorite expressions. The many friends of Father Solanus helped the Capuchins begin a soup kitchen during the Depression. Capuchins are still feeding the hungry there today. In 1946 in failing health, he was transferred to the Capuchin novitiate in Huntington, Indiana, where he lived until 1956 when he was hospitalized in Detroit. He died on July 31, 1957. An estimated 20,000 people passed by his coffin before his burial in St. Bonaventure Church in Detroit. At the funeral Mass, the provincial Father Gerald said: "His was a life of service and love for people like me and you. When he was not himself sick, he nevertheless suffered with and for you that were sick. When he was not physically hungry, he hungered with people like you. He had a divine love for people. He loved people for what he could do for them—and for God, through them." In 1960 a Father Solanus Guild was formed in Detroit to aid Capuchin seminarians. By 1967 the guild had 5,000 members—many of them grateful recipients of his practical advice and his comforting assurance that God would not abandon them in their trials. He was declared Venerable in 1995.
 Comment: James Patrick Derum, his biographer, writes that eventually Father Solanus was weary from bearing the burdens of the people who visited him. "Long since, he had come to know the Christ-taught truth that pure love of God and one’s fellowmen as children of God are in the final event all that matter. Living this truth ardently and continuously had made him, spiritually, a free man—free from slavery to passions, from self-seeking, from self-indulgence, from self-pity—free to serve wholly both God and man" (The Porter of St. Bonaventure’s, page 199).
 Quote: Father Maurice Casey, a brother of Father Solanus, was once in a sanitarium near Baltimore and was annoyed at the priest-chaplain there. Father Solanus wrote his brother: "God could have established his Church under supervision of angels that have no faults or weaknesses. But who can doubt that as it stands today, consisting of and under the supervision of poor sinners—successors to the ‘poor fishermen of Galilee’ #151; the Church is a more outstanding miracle than any other way?"
Shared from : AmericanCatholic 

You are Invited to a FREE Conference with Bishop Riesbeck at Dominican University in Ottawa Canada

Book this into your calendars! Looking to be a great conference on the Family, especially in light of the recent extraordinary synod. It's free! Discussing the Family - with Bishop Riesbeck of the Companions of the Cross, Dominican Fr. Maxime and Archbishop Prendergast...Mass - Confessions - Music - Prayers....Attend 1 day or all 3...
Thursday, November 20, 2014 - 19:00 to Saturday, November 22, 2014 - 16:00

We have been reminded by the Church throughout the centuries that the family is central to the well-being of society.The Family, a conference, will be a time for Ottawa’s Catholic community to come together to study, pray and reflect on God’s plan for the family. 
How may we bring about God’s dream of a “holy people who are his own” (Pope Francis)? We will study together the documents of the Church of the past decades, as well as the recent Synod on the Family to answer this question. 

For more information on the conference and to register, pleaseclick here.
Our mailing address is: 96 Empress Avenue, Ottawa, Ontario K1R 7G3
Thursday, November 20th, 7pm (Prayer at 6:30pm)
Friday, November 21st, 7pm (Prayer at 6:30pm)
Saturday, November 22nd, 11:45am
"The Complexity of the Modern Family" (Fr. Maxime Allard, o.p.)"What does the Church say about Family?" (Bishop Christian Riesbeck, CC.)Mass (presided by Archbishop Terrence Prendergast, s.j.)

Saturday Schedule
Section ASection BSection CSection DSection E
10-10:30amIntroduce Discussion Topic "What do people say Family is? What do you?"Introduce Discussion TopicIntroduce Discussion TopicIntroduce Discussion Topic Introduce Discussion Topic
12:45-1:30Lunch 10$Lunch $10Lunch $10Lunch $10Lunch $10
Session A
"The Virtuous Family"
Fr. Michael Winn
"Praying together"
Nathalie Ladouceur "Raising Teens in the Church  
Fr. Hervé Tremblay
La famille dans l'Ancien Testament
Mr. Cazelais et Mr. Morin
"Les familles reconstituées
2:30-2:45pm (Break)
Session B
Fr. Maxime Allard "Brokenness and Reconcialition"Renée Lockert "Evangelizing and Being Evangelized"Fr. Jean Doutre "Insights from the New Testament"Mr. Cazelais et Mr. 'Les familles reconstituées"Nathalie Ladouceur "Les ados et la foi"
(In the Church)
Prayer and ConfessionPrayer and Confession
Prayer and Confession
Prayer and ConfessionPrayer and Confession

Latest News from Vatican Information Service - New regulations from Curia and Pope Francis appoints

05-11-2014 - Year XXII - Num. 194 

- General audience: a Church separated from her bishop is an ailing Church
- The Holy Father: the annulment process must be kept separate from economic interests
- New norms on resignations of diocesan bishops and officials of the Roman Curia
- Exhibition of the Holy Shroud in Turin
- Other Pontifical Acts
General audience: a Church separated from her bishop is an ailing Church
Vatican City, 5 November 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father dedicated today's catechesis to the hierarchical dimension of the Church. Christ edifies the Church as His body through her ministries, and it is through the episcopal ministry that the Lord is present in His Church, guiding and caring for her.
“In the presence and in the ministry of the bishops, the presbyters and the deacons”, he said, “we are able to recognise the true face of the Church. ... And through these brothers, elected by the Lord and consecrated by the sacrament of ordination, the Church exercises her maternity”. Francis emphasised that this office is not, however, an honour but rather a service to be performed following Christ's example.
He also remarked that bishops must be united, as a family. “When Jesus chose and called the Apostles, he imagined them not separated from each other, but together, united with Him, like one family. The bishops too constitute a single college, gathered around the Pope, who is the guardian and guarantor of this profound communion”. He added, “let us think of all those bishops around the world who, while living in widely differing locations, cultures, sensibilities and traditions … feel close to one another and become an expression of the intimate bond, in Christ, between their communities”.
The Pope concluded by explaining that a healthy Church cannot exist if the faithful, deacons and presbyters are not united with their bishop: “The Church separated from her bishop is an ailing Church. This union of the faithful and the bishop is willed by Jesus”.
The Holy Father: the annulment process must be kept separate from economic interests
Vatican City, 5 November 2014 (VIS) – Before arriving in St. Peter's Square for the usualWednesday morning general audience, Pope Francis received in audience the participants in the course on marriage organised by the Roman Rota, in the Vatican's Paul VI Hall. The Pope commented that during the recent Synod of Bishops, there had been discussions regarding the procedures for annulment and the need to streamline them for reasons of justice. Francis also spoke of the many people who wait for years for a judgement to be reached. “Sometimes the procedures are very long and difficult, which does not help matters, and people give up”.
The Pontiff emphasised the importance of this type of course and the need to be careful to ensure that the procedures do not become linked to economic interests, referring to public scandals. He noted that during the Synod some proposals had been made regarding the costs of the process. “When spiritual interest is attached to economic interests, then it not a matter of God”. He concluded, “The Mother Church has enough generosity to be able to provide justice freely, as we are freely justified by Jesus Christ. This point is important – these two issues must be separate”.
New norms on resignations of diocesan bishops and officials of the Roman Curia
Vatican City, 5 November 2014 (VIS) – The Rescriptum modifying the presentation and acceptance of resignation from pastoral ministry by diocesan bishops and offices of the Roman Curia by pontifical appointment came into effect today.
The text is as follows:
Art. 1: The current discipline in the Latin Church and in the “sui iuris” Oriental Churches, by which diocesan and eparchal Bishops, and those held to be of equivalent office in accordance with canons 381 para. 2 of the Code of Canon Law and 313 of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, as well as coadjutor and auxiliary Bishops, are invited to present the resignation from their pastoral office upon reaching the age of seventy-five years, is confirmed.
Art. 2: Resignation from the aforementioned pastoral offices is effective only from the moment in which it is accepted by the legitimate Authorities.
Art .3: With the acceptance of the resignation from the aforementioned offices, the interested parties cease to hold any other office at national level conferred for a period determined in concomitance with the aforementioned pastoral office.
Art. 4: The gesture of a Bishop who, by motives of love or the wish to offer a better service to the community, considers it necessary to resign from the role of Pastor before reaching the age of seventy-five on account of illness or other serious reasons, is to be deemed worthy of ecclesial appreciation. In such cases, the faithful are requested to demonstrate solidarity and understanding for their former Pastor, providing punctual assistance consistent with the principles of charity and justice, in accordance with canon 402 para. 2 of the Code of Canon Law.
Art. 5: In some particular circumstances, the competent Authorities may deem it necessary to request that a Bishop present his resignation from pastoral office, after informing him of the cause for this request, and listening closely to his reasons, in fraternal dialogue.
Art. 6: Cardinals serving as Heads of the Dicasteries of the Roman Curia and other Cardinals holding office by pontifical nomination are also required, upon the competion of their seventy-fifth year of life, to present their resignation from office to the Pope, who, after full consideration, will proceed.
Exhibition of the Holy Shroud in Turin
Vatican City, 5 November 2014 (VIS) – A press conference was held in the Holy See Press Office this morning during which Archbishop Cesare Nosiglia of Turin, Italy, presented the next exhibition of the Holy Shroud, to be held in Turin from 19 April to 24 June, on the theme “The Greatest Love”. He also presented the initiatives for the celebration of the bicentenary of the birth of St. John Bosco and remarked that Pope Francis intends to visit Turin during this period.
Other speaks in the conference were Piero Fassino, mayor of Turin; Elide Tisi, deputy mayor; and Marco Bonatti, Press Officer for the Exhibition Committee.
This will be the third time the Shroud has been displayed to the public during this millennium and the event will focus on two themes: the young, and those who suffer. It is precisely for this reason that the Pope has allowed the solemn exposition, which coincides with the Jubilee for the 200th anniversary of the birth of St. John Bosco.
As on previous occasions, special attention will be paid to the sick who visit the Holy Shroud. The pastoral ministry for healthcare in Turin will make two reception centres available for pilgrims and carers. In addition, with the collaboration of more than 3500 volunteers, moments of prayer will be held, and a confessional service in different languages will be available in locations in the area near the Cathedral.
The visit will be free of charge but booking is obligatory, to enable the effective management of the flow of pilgrims. Booking is online, at
Other Pontifical Acts
Vatican City, 5 November 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father has appointed:
- Bishop Milton Kenan Junior, auxiliary of the archdiocese of Sao Paulo, Brazil, as bishop of Barretos (area 8,770, population 354,000, Catholics 284,000, priests 42, permanent deacons 1, religious 106), Brazil.
- Bishop Joao Jose da Costa, O. Carm., of Iguatu, Brazil, as coadjutor of the archdiocese of Aracaju, Brazil.
- Rev. Pr. Corrado Maggioni, S.M.M., as under secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. Rev. Fr. Maggioni was previously Office Head of the same congregation.

Breaking News Christian Couple Burned alive - Pregnant Mother of 4 and her husband - Please PRAY

(Morning Star News) – Commanded from mosque loudspeakers, a Muslim throng in Punjab Province killed a Christian couple today after a co-worker accused the pregnant wife of defiling the Koran, sources said.
Living on the premises of the brick kiln where she worked in Chak 59 village near Kot Radha Kishan, Karur District, about 60 kilometers (37 miles) southwest of Lahore, Shama Bibi was beaten to death before the enraged mob threw her body into the kiln, a relative said. The 28-year-old mother of four children was five months pregnant.
The relative told Morning Star News that her husband, Shahzad Masih, was also beaten but was still alive when he was thrown into the kiln with his wife’s body. He was 32.
On Sunday (Nov. 2), Shama was cleaning her quarters when she found amulets of her late father-in-law, who had used them in the practice black magic.
“Shama burned the amulets and some other related material, assuming that this was the best way to get rid of ‘evil stuff,’” the relative said. “She later threw the ashes on a garbage heap outside their quarters when Muhammad Irfan, a Muslim co-worker, noticed some half-burnt pieces of paper from the amulets and raised a clamor, claiming that Shahzad’s family had desecrated Quranic pages.”

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The kiln is owned by a Muslim, Chaudhry Yousaf Gujjar. On Monday (Nov. 3), announcements emanated from village mosques calling on “all faithful” to take notice of the alleged blasphemy committed by Shama. The announcements panicked the five Christian brothers of Masih – who also worked at the kiln – and  their families, but Gujjar assured them that he would handle the situation.
“At around 7 a.m. on Tuesday, a mob of about 3,000-4,000 people, most of whom were armed with batons and sharp-edged weapons, started gathering around the brick kiln,” the relative said, based on information from another relative who witnessed the entire crime. “The kiln’s manager, Muhammad Akram, asked the couple to hide in a room next to the office and told them to lock the door from inside while he put a padlock on the outside. Sensing the imminent danger to their lives, Shahzad’s brothers and all male children fled the kiln, leaving behind the women and little children in the quarters thinking that the mob, which was baying for the blood of Shahzad and his wife, would not hurt them.”
The mob forced their way into the quarters and started searching for the couple. Unable to locate them, the crowd rushed towards the office and demanded that the manager reveal their whereabouts.
“We are not sure if Akram gave away the couple, but according to [the other relative], the mob broke into the room and then dragged both of them out to the courtyard,” the relative said. “The mob then mercilessly beat up Shama and Shahzad, using fists, kicks and batons at will. [The other relative] said Shama was already dead by the time the Islamist zealots had thrown her body into the kiln. Shahzad was still alive when he was shoved into the fire.”
The couple is survived by two boys and two girls, the eldest son being 7 years old.
Questionable Prosecution
Soon after news broke in local media, large police contingents were deployed in the area to prevent further bloodshed.
Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif formed a three-member committee to expedite the investigation of the killings and ordered police to beef up security in Christian neighborhoods in the province.
Kasur District Police Officer Capt. Jawad Qamar told Morning Star News that a case had been registered against at least 2,000 “unidentified people” for the murders, and that investigations were continuing. He also said that police had arrested 48 people.
The police official’s claims could not be independently verified despite repeated efforts.
Police filed a First Information Report (FIR) on its own accord, even though the aggrieved family was determined to file a formal complaint into the killings of their loved ones. Sources in the Punjab Inspector General of Police office told Morning Star News that the government did not want the family to become the complainant in the case as it would keep media focused on developments and cause “global embarrassment” to the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, whose three terms in office have been tainted with extreme violence against non-Muslims, particularly Christians.
Capt. Qamar declined to say why police had filed the FIR of its own accord rather than allow the relatives to do so.
All major acts of religious terrorism against Christians, including Joseph Colony arson in March 2013, Gojra carnage in 2009, and previous killings at Shanti Nagar, Khanewal and Bamnianwala, have taken place under Pakistan Muslim League (N) governments, which draw support from banned Islamist extremist outfits based in the southern belt of Punjab Province.
The relative of the deceased and Christian rights advocates criticized the police registration of the FIR and the hasty manner in which the remains were buried without informing the family, allegedly on the counsel of a politician.
“We weren’t even told about the funerals. How can a politician approve the funeral of my [relative] without even seeking my permission?” the source said, adding that the family had decided to challenge the government’s decision to register a case on its own.
Attorney Aneeqa Maria, who will be filing a request in the Lahore High Court for a stay order against the government’s FIR and for a fresh FIR into the case filed by the family, said that the attitude of the government and police showed that they would brush this case under the rug in the same way they did with those accused in the Joseph Colony arson, which destroyed 175 homes, after rumors spread of an alleged remark against Islam by a Christian (see Morning Star News, March 11, 2013).
“The police were the complainants in the case – name one accused who has been convicted in the case,” Maria said. “In fact, most of the accused are out on bails, while several others have been acquitted of the charges because of deliberately weakened prosecution. This is what the government wants to do in this case too.”
She vowed not to let the government get away with the “three murders.”
Napolean Qayyum, field officer of the Voice Society and a political worker affiliated with the opposition Pakistan People’s Party, said that the incident had furthered fears in the minority community that any person could simply devastate their lives by playing the “blasphemy card.”
“The frenzied mob did not even consider Shama’s condition and kept raining kicks and batons on her,” he said. “Today three innocent lives were lost – the couple and their unborn child – and the government is responsible for these murders.”
He added that both Muslims and non-Muslims were falling prey to the blasphemy laws but no political party had dared to confront its misuse by people to settle personal vendettas.
Rights groups have said that Pakistan’s blasphemy laws are often misused to persecute minorities and to settle personal scores. In a recent report, Amnesty International said the vague formulation of the blasphemy laws, along with inadequate investigation by authorities and intimidation by mobs and some religious groups, has promoted vigilantism across Pakistan, especially in Punjab Province.
Amnesty also condemned the killings, demanding that authorities bring justice.
“This type of violence is fueled by Pakistan’s repressive blasphemy laws, which add to the climate of fear for religious minorities,” the organization said in a statement. “In this case, a mob appears to have played judge, jury and executioner.”
The rights group said the climate of impunity around violence against religious minorities in Pakistan is pervasive, and that it is all too rare that those behind attacks are held accountable.
On Oct. 16 a court upheld the death sentence for Aasiya Noreen, commonly known as Asia Bibi, the first woman to be sentenced to death for blasphemy in Pakistan. She was arrested in June 2009 after Muslim co-workers in a berry field 60 miles west of Lahore beat her when she refused to convert to Islam.
SEE ALSO Agenzia Fides report - Vatican Mission Society.... 
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Pope Francis "There is no healthy Church if the faithful priests, deacons are not united around their bishop" Angelus Video / Text

Pope Francis walks towards the raised dias in St. Peter's Square for his weekly general audience - AP
(Vatican Radio) A Church that is not united around its bishop is a sick Church.  Jesus wanted unity between the bishop and all the faithful, starting with priests and deacons. However the role of bishop is not a position of honor, it is a service.  Therefore, there is no room in the Church for a worldly mentality, for people who seek ‘ecclesiastical careers’, for bishops who instead of lowering themselves in service, are vain, proud and power-hungry. 
The Ordained Ministries and in particular the role of Bishops and episcopal collegiality were the focus of Pope Francis’ General Audience catechesis this week.
The Pope began by asking those present to pray for bishops, that they may be men of virtue: “It isn’t easy” he noted “we are all sinners, so pray for us”. 
He then said Christ himself instituted the ordained ministries with the purpose of building up the Church, as His Body.  The Pope said among these the role of the bishop stands out because through the Bishop it is Christ himself who is present.
Moreover, in carrying out his service of protecting and guiding the people of God, the Bishop expresses the motherhood of the Church.  
Moving from his scripted speech, the Pope continued “We understand, therefore, that it is not a position of prestige, an honorary role. The Bishop is not an honorary role it is a service.  Jesus wanted it this way. There should not be room in the church for a worldly mentality. A worldly mentality speaks of a man who has an ‘ecclesiastical career and has become a bishop’. There should be no place for such a mentality in the Church. The Bishop serves, it is not a position of honor, to boast about”. 
Pope Francis said that the many Bishops who are Saints show us that one does not seek this ministry, one does not ask for it, it cannot be bought, one accepts it in obedience, not in an attempt to climb higher but to lower oneself, just as Jesus "humbled himself and became obedient unto to death, even death on a cross"(Phil 2,8). 
And he added “It is sad when we see a man who seeks this office and does all he can to get it and when he gets it does not serve, instead goes around like a peacock and lives only for his vanity”.Pope Francis continued “The Bishops are also called to express one single college, gathered around the Pope, who is the guardian and guarantor of this profound communion that was so dear to Jesus and His apostles themselves”.  Recalling the recent Synod on the Family, the Pope observed that it is beautiful when the bishops, with the Pope express this collegiality, despite “living in places, cultures, sensibilities and traditions that are different and distant from each other”. 
Concluding the Pope said we must recognize our Bishop as a great gift “in the knowledge that it is in the Bishop that the relationship of each Church with the Apostles is visible and with all the other communities, united with their bishops and the Pope in the One Church of the Lord Jesus, that is our Holy Mother the Hierarchical Church”.
Below please find a Vatican Radio translation of the Holy Father’s General Audience
Our Holy Mother the Hierarchical Church
Dear Brothers and Sisters Good day,
We heard the things that the Apostle Paul says to the Bishop Titus, how many virtues we bishops must have, we all heard no? And it’s not easy, it’s not easy because we are sinners. But we entrust ourselves to your prayers so that we can at least hope to be closer to the things that the Apostle Paul advises for all Bishops.  Do you agree? Will you pray for us?
We have already had occasion to point out, in the previous reflections, how the Holy Spirit has always filled the Church with an abundance of gifts. Now, in the power and grace of his Spirit, Christ does not fail to give rise to the ordained ministries, in order to build up the Christian community as His body. Among these ministries, that of the bishop stands out. In the Bishop, assisted by priests and deacons, it is Christ himself who is present and who continues to take care of his Church, ensuring his protection and guidance.
In the presence and ministry of bishops, priests and deacons, we can recognize the true face of the Church: she is our Holy Mother the Hierarchical Church. And really, through these brothers chosen by the Lord and consecrated by the sacrament of Holy Orders, the Church exercises her motherhood: she generates us in Baptism as Christians, when we are born again in Christ; she watches over our growth in the faith; she accompanies us into the arms of the Father, to receive His forgiveness; she prepares us for the Eucharistic table, where she nourishes us with the Word of God and the Body and Blood of Jesus; she calls upon us the blessing of God and the power of His Spirit, sustaining us throughout the course of our life and envelops us with her tenderness and warmth, especially in the most delicate moments of trial, suffering and death.
The Church’s motherhood is particularly expressed in particular in the person of the bishop and in his ministry. In fact, as Jesus chose the Apostles and sent them out to preach the Gospel and shepherd his flock, so the bishops, their successors, are placed at the head of the Christian community, as guarantor of their faith and as a living sign of the presence of the Lord among them. We understand, therefore, that it is not a position of prestige, an honorary role. The Bishop is not an honorary role it is a service.  Jesus wanted it this way. There should not be room in the church for a worldly mentality. A worldly mentality speaks of a man who has an ‘ecclesiastical career and has become a bishop’. There should be no place for such a mentality in the Church. The Bishop serves, it is not a position of honor, to boast about. Being Bishop means keeping ever present the example of Jesus, as the Good Shepherd, came not to be served but to serve (cf. Mt 20:28; Mk 10:45), and to give His life for His sheep (cf. Jn 10:11). The Bishops who are Saints - and there are many in the history of the Church - show us that one does not seek this ministry, one does not ask for it, it cannot be bought, one accepts it in obedience, not in an attempt to climb higher but to lower oneself, just as Jesus "humbled himself and became obedient unto to death, even death on a cross"(Phil 2,8).
It is sad when we see a man who seeks this office and does all he can to get it and when he gets it does not serve, instead goes around like a peacock and lives only for his vanity.
 There is another precious element that deserves to be highlighted. When Jesus chose and called the Apostles, he thought of them not as separate one from another, each on their own, but together, that they might be with Him, united as one family. The Bishops too are a single college, gathered around the Pope, who is the guardian and guarantor of this profound communion that was so dear to Jesus and His apostles themselves. How beautiful it is, then, when the bishops, with the Pope express this collegiality! And try to be the servants of the faithful, the servants of the Church! We recently experienced this in the Assembly of the Synod on the Family. Just think of all the Bishops throughout the world who, despite living in places, cultures, sensibilities and traditions that are different and distant from each other, - One bishop the other day told me that to come to Rome it took a flight of 30 hours – even distant from each other, when bishops feel part of each other and become an expression of the intimate bond, in Christ, in their communities . And in the common ecclesial prayer all Bishops together listen to the Lord and the Spirit, thus being able to pay greater attention to man and the signs of the times (cf. Conc. Ecumenical Council. Vat. II, Const. Gaudium et Spes, 4 ).
Dear friends, all of this makes us understand why the Christian communities recognize the Bishop as a great gift, and are called to nurture a sincere and profound communion with him, starting with the priests and deacons. There is no healthy Church if the faithful priests, deacons are not united around their bishop.  This Church not united around their bishop is a sick Church. Jesus wanted this union, of all faithful with the Bishop.  The priests and deacons too. And this in the knowledge that it is in the Bishop that the relationship of each Church with the Apostles is visible and with all the other communities, united with their bishops and the Pope in the One Church of the Lord Jesus, that is our Holy Mother the Hierarchical Church.
(Emer McCarthy)