In today’s post, we read the Church instructing bishops and religious superiors to set up mixed commissions to deal with matters pertaining to both:
63. Since it is of utmost importance that the council of major superiors collaborate diligently and in a spirit of trust with episcopal conferences (cf. Christus Dominus 35, 5; Ad Gentes 33), “it is desirable that questions having reference to both bishops and religious should be dealt with by mixed commissions consisting of bishops and major religious superiors, men or women” (Ecclesiae Sanctae II, 43).
It seems the recent mix-ups between the bishops and women religious in the United States did not benefit from such a mixed commission.
Such a mixed commission should be structured in such a way that even if the right of ultimate decision making is to be always left to the councils or conferences, according to the respective competencies, it can, as an organism of mutual counsel, liaison, communication, study, and reflection, achieve its purpose efficiently.
Bishops are responsible:
It is the competency, then, of the Shepherds to foster the coordination of all apostolic undertakings and activities, each in his own diocese; the same holds for the patriarchal synod and episcopal conferences for their respective regions (cf. CD 36, 5).
Another group is suggested:
In questions regarding religious, bishops, if the need or utility require it — as in fact it has in many places — should create a special commission within the episcopal conference. Nevertheless, the presence of such a commission not only does not hamper the operation of the mixed commission, but rather postulates it.
You can check the full document online here. But any thoughts or comments today?
I think the CCLI is the USCCB enfleshment of this principle. Can’t say that I’m up on the national Church and have no opinion on how well or poorly this committee works.
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