FRANCIS

APOSTOLIC CONSTITUTION

EPISCOPALIS COMMUNIO

ON THE SYNOD OF BISHOPS

(This is a machine translation of the Italian)

Thus the Bishop is both a teacher and a disciple. He is a teacher when, endowed with a special assistance of the Holy Spirit, he announces to the faithful the Word of truth in the name of Christ the head and shepherd. But he is also a disciple when, knowing that the Spirit is given to every baptized person, he listens to the voice of Christ who speaks through the whole People of God, making him " infallible in believing " [20] . In fact, "the totality of the faithful, having the anointing that comes from the Saint (see Jn2:20 and 27), can not be mistaken in believing, and manifests this property by the supernatural sense of the faith of the whole People, when "from the Bishops to the last lay faithful", shows his universal consent in matters of faith and morals " [21] . For this reason, the Bishop is called to "walk in front, indicating the path, indicating the way; walking in the middle, to strengthen [the People of God] in unity; walking behind, both because no one stays behind, but, above all, to follow the flair that has the People of God to find new ways. A Bishop who lives among his faithful has open ears to hear "what the Spirit says to the Churches" ( Ap2, 7) and the "voice of the sheep", also through those diocesan bodies that have the task of advising the Bishop, promoting a loyal and constructive dialogue " [22] . 

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