Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Re: Pope's authority to remove bishops

By Cheshire (articles ) | May 06, 2003

The Pope has universal and immediate jurisidiction over all the dioceses of the world, as explained in the Code of Canon of Law and encoded by General Councils, the most recent example being "Christus Dominus" of Vatican II. No bishop serves without Papal appointment, and as he is himself the definer of the universal law of the church with or without consent of a General Council, he defines by his own action the right and reason to remove a bishop. To him alone is reserved the right to legislate in "casae maiores", that is, matters of great moment and personages of eminent dignity. In the exercise of his "universal coercive jurisdiction" the Sovereign Pontiff has full authority to "deprive" of his see any bishop, for any reason sufficient to the Sovereign Pontiff himself.

Numerous recent examples obtain, but a dramatic one is the case of the deprivation of Portuguese bishops by Pope St. Pius X. In the non-sacramental case of Cardinals, whose titles are of jurisidctional distinction apart from Holy Orders, the Pope has sovereign authority to bestow the Red Hat and to remove it (as Pope XI did with Cardinal Billot.) As the Pope is subject to Scripture and Tradition, he cannot abolish the episcopate but he can deprive any bishop of jurisidction.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our year-end goal ($27,707 to go):
$150,000.00 $122,292.96
18% 82%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

There are no comments yet for this item.

Fall 2014 Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Another side of Francis: US-Cuba role shows Pope's diplomatic muscle 1 hours ago
Silly season: a Christmas approaches, a scholar questions whether Jesus ever existed 2 hours ago
The intrinsic immorality of torture: still not convinced? 6 hours ago
The Complexity of Reforming Religious Communities December 17
Speaking Softly to Women Religious December 16

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: Europe seems 'elderly and haggard' CWN - November 25
Pope Francis, Ecumenical Patriarch sign joint declaration, lament persecution of Christians CWN - December 1
Consistory for new cardinals scheduled for February CWN - December 11
Vatican report on US women religious calls for further self-assessment CWN - December 16
Pope brokered deal to open US-Cuba ties CWN - December 17