Pastor Bonus (Apostolic Constitution)

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Pastor Bonus is an Apostolic Constitution promulgated by Pope John Paul II on 28 June 1988. It instituted a number of reforms in the process of running the central government of the Roman Catholic Church, as article 1 states The Roman Curia is the complex of dicasteries and institutes which help the Roman Pontiff in the exercise of his supreme pastoral office for the good and service of the whole Church and of the particular Churches. It thus strengthens the unity of the faith and the communion of the people of God and promotes the mission proper to the Church in the world .
   APOSTOLIC CONSTITUTION  PASTOR BONUS JOHN PAUL, BISHOPSERVANT OF THE SERVANTS OF GODFOR AN EVERLASTING MEMORIAL  TABLE OF CONTENTSIntroductionIGENERAL NORMS  Notion of Roman Curia (art. 1)Structure of the Dicasteries (arts. 2-10)Procedure (arts. 11-21)Meetings of Cardinals (arts. 22-23) Council of Cardinals for the Study of Organizational and Economic Questionsof the  Apostolic See  (arts. 24-25)Relations with Particular Churches (arts. 26-27)  Ad limina  Visits (arts. 28-32)Pastoral Character of the Activity of the Roman Curia (arts. 33-35)Central Labour Office (art. 36)Regulations (arts. 37-38) IISECRETARIAT OF STATE  (Arts. 39-47) First Section (arts. 41-44)Second Section (arts. 45-47)   IIICONGREGATIONS Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (arts. 48-55)Congregation for the Oriental Churches (arts. 56-61)Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments (arts. 62-70)Congregation for the Causes of Saints (arts. 71-74)Congregation for Bishops (arts. 75-84) Pontifical Commission for Latin America  (arts. 83-84)Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples (arts. 85-92)Congregation for the Clergy (arts. 93-104) Pontifical Commission Preserving the Patrimony of Art and History  (arts. 99-104)Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and for Societies of Apostolic Life (arts. 105-111)  Congregation of Seminaries and Educational Institutions (arts. 112-116) IVTRIBUNALS Apostolic Penitentiary (arts. 117-120)Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura (arts. 121-125)Tribunal of the Roman Rota (arts. 126-130) VPONTIFICAL COUNCILS  Pontifical Council for the Laity (arts. 131-134)Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity (arts. 135-138)Pontifical Council for the Family (arts. 139-141)Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace (arts. 142-144)Pontifical Council Cor unum  (arts. 145-148)Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People (arts. 149-151)Pontifical Council for Pastoral Assistance to Health Care Workers (arts. 152-153)Pontifical Council for the Interpretation of Legislative Texts (arts. 154-158)Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue (arts. 159-162)Pontifical Council for Dialogue with Non-Believers (arts. 163-165)Pontifical Council for Culture (arts. 166-168)Pontifical Council for Social Communications (arts. 169-170) VIADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES Apostolic Camera (art. 171)Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See (arts. 172-175)Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See (arts. 176-179) VIIOTHER INSTITUTES OF THE ROMAN CURIA Prefecture of the Papal Household (arts. 180-181)Office for the Liturgical Celebrations of the Supreme Pontiff (art. 182) VIIIADVOCATES (arts. 183-185) IXINSTITUTIONS CONNECTED WITH THE HOLY SEE (arts. 186-193) APPENDIX I  Pastoral Significance of the Visit ad limina Apostolorum  (cf. arts. 28-32) APPENDIX II  The Collaborators of the Apostolic See as a Work Community (cf. arts. 33-36)  Apostolic Letter  Apostolica Sedes  by John Paul II on the meaning of work performed for the Apostolic See TRANSLATION NOTEIntroduction 1. The Good Shepherd, the Lord Christ Jesus (cf.  Jn  10: 11, 14), conferred on the bishops, the successors of the Apostles, and in a singular way on the bishop of Rome, the successor of Peter, the mission of making disciples in all nations and of preaching the Gospel to every creature. And so the Church was established, the people of God, and the task of its shepherds or pastors was indeed to be that service which is called very expressively in Sacred Scripture a diaconia  or ministry. The main thrust of this service or diaconia  is for more and more communion or fellowship to be generated   in the whole body of the Church, and for this communion to thrive and  produce good results. As the insight of the Second Vatican Council has taught us, we come, with the gentle prompting of the Holy Spirit, to see the meaning of the mystery of the Church in the manifold patterns within this communion: for the Spirit will guide the Church in the way of all truth (cf.  Jn  16:13) and [unify] her in communion and in the work of ministry, he bestows upon her varied hierarchic and charismatic gifts [...]. Constantly he renews her and leads her to perfect union with her Spouse. Wherefore, as the same Council affirms, fully incorporated into the Church are those who, possessing the Spirit of Christ, accept all the means of salvation given to the Church together with her entire organization, and who —by the bonds constituted by the profession of faith, the sacraments, ecclesiastical government, and communion —are joined in the visible structure of the Church of Christ, who rules her through the Supreme Pontiff and the bishops.  Not only has this notion of communion been explained in the documents of the Second Vatican Council in general, especially in the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, but it also received attention from the Fathers attending the 1985 and 1987 General Assemblies of the Synod of Bishops. Into this definition of the Church comes a convergence of the actual mystery of the Church, the orders or constituent elements of the messianic people of God, and the hierarchical constitution of the Church itself. To describe it all in one broad expression, we take the words of the Dogmatic Constitution  Lumen gentium  just mentioned and say that the Church, in Christ, is in the nature of sacrament —a sign and instrument, that is, of communion with God and of unity among the whole of humankind. That is why this sacred communion thrives in the whole Church of Christ, as our predecessor Paul VI so well described it, which lives and acts in the various Christian communities, namely, in the  particular Churches dispersed throughout the whole world. 2. When one thinks about this communion, which is the force, as it were, that glues the whole Church together, then the hierarchical constitution of the Church unfolds and comes into effect. It was endowed by the Lord himself with a primatial and collegial nature at the same time  when he constituted the apostles in the form of a college or permanent assembly, at the head of which he placed Peter, chosen from amongst them. Here we are looking at that special concept whereby the pastors of the Church share in the threefold task of Christ  —to teach, to sanctify, and to govern: and just as the apostles acted with Peter, so do the  bishops together with the bishop of Rome. To use the words of the Second Vatican Council once more: In that way, then, with priests and deacons as helpers, the bishops received the charge of the community, presiding in God’s stead over the flock of which they are the shepherds in that they are teachers of doctrine, ministers of sacred worship and holders of office in government. Moreover, just as the office which the Lord confided to Peter alone, as first of the apostles, destined to be transmitted to his successors, is a permanent one, so also  endures the office, which the apostles received, of shepherding the Church, a charge destined to be exercised without interruption by the sacred order of bishops. And so it comes about that this college —the college of bishops joined together with the bishop of Rome — in so far as it is composed of many members, is the expression of the multifariousness and universality of the people of God; and of the unity of the flock of Christ, in so far as it is assembled under one head. The power and authority of the bishops bears the mark of diaconia or stewardship , fitting the example of Jesus Christ himself who came not to be served, but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many (  Mk   10:45). Therefore the power that is found in the Church is to  be understood as the power of being a servant and is to be exercised in that way; before anything else it is the authority of a shepherd.This applies to each and every bishop in his own particular Church; but all the more does it apply to the bishop of Rome, whose Petrine ministry works for the good and benefit of the universal Church. The Roman Church has charge over the whole body of charity and so it is the servant of love. It is largely from this principle that those great words of old have come — The servant of the servants of God —, by which Peter’s successor is known and defined.That is why the Roman Pontiff has also taken pains to deal carefully with the business of  particular Churches, referred to him by the bishops or in some other way come to his attention, in order to encourage his brothers in the faith (cf.  Lk   22:32), by means of this wider experience and by virtue of his office as Vicar of Christ and pastor of the whole Church. For he was convinced that the reciprocal communion between the bishop of Rome and the bishops throughout the world, bonded in unity, charity, and peace, brought the greatest advantage in promoting and defending the unity of faith and discipline in the whole Church.3. In the light of the foregoing, it is understood that the diaconia  peculiar to Peter and his successors is necessarily related to the diaconia  of the other apostles and their successors, whose sole purpose is to build up the Church in this world.From ancient times, this essential and interdependent relation of the Petrine ministry with the task and ministry of the other apostles has demanded something of a visible sign, not  just by way of a symbol but something existing in reality, and it must still demand it. Deeply conscious of the burden of apostolic toil, our predecessors have given clear and thoughtful expression to this need, as we see, for example, in the words of Innocent III who wrote to the bishops and prelates of France in 1198 when he was sending a legate to them: Although the Lord has given us the fullness of power in the Church, a power that makes us owe something to all Christians, still we cannot stretch the limits of human nature. Since we cannot deal personally with every single concern —the law of human condition does not suffer it —we are sometimes constrained to use certain brothers of ours as extensions of our own body, to take care of things we would rather deal with in person if the convenience of the Church allowed it. This gives some insight into the nature of that institution that Peter’s successor has used in exercising his mission for the good of the universal Church, and some understanding of the  procedures by which the institution itself has had to carry out its task: we mean the Roman Curia, which has worked in the service of the Petrine ministry from ancient times.For the Roman Curia came into existence for this purpose, that the fruitful communion we mentioned might be strengthened and make ever more bountiful progress, rendering more effective the task of pastor of the Church which Christ entrusted to Peter and his successors, a task that has been growing and expanding from day to day. Our predecessor Sixtus V, in the Apostolic Constitution  Immensa æterni Dei , admitted as much: The Roman Pontiff,
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