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8 Cards in this Set

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apostolic succession
The unbroken chain of bishops from the apostles to the present day. The apostles received the power to become bishops and priests from Jesus himself. They, in turn, passed this power on to others through Holy Orders. This passing on of Holy Orders down to our own day is called apostolic succession. Only the Catholic and Orthodox Churches have this succession. Only their clergy thus share in the Sacrament of Holy Orders.
bishops
Successors of the apostles who have received the fullness of the priesthood. Bishops are the spiritual leaders of Christians in their dioceses (geographical areas). They alone can ordain men to the priesthood and to the office of bishop. United with the Pope, they are the official teachers of the faith in the world.
deacon
A man who is specially ordained and shares in the sacrament of orders. He serves the Church by his sacred ministry, for example, at Mass, by preaching, as ordinary minister of Baptism and Communion, as official witness of the Church at weddings, as well as by performing works of mercy for the needy. Deacons may be transitional (studying to become priests) or permanent (who are called to the vocation of deacon for life).
hierarchy
The order of authority in the Church. The bishops united under the Pope as the true successors of Saint Peter and the apostles form the hierarchy in the Church. It is their duty to teach the faith, govern Christians in their dioceses, and administer the sacraments.
ordained priesthood
The priesthood which is given to a Catholic man through the sacrament of Holy Orders. While all Christians share in the priesthood of Christ, ordained priests, like Jesus, offer the Sacrifice of the Mass and forgive sins. Priests are often assigned to a parish where they are in charge of our spiritual well-being.
priest
Someone who is chosen to pray and offer sacrifice to God on behalf of others. Many religions have or had priests. The sacramental priesthood was given to us by Christ, who passed it on to his apostles.
priesthood of the faithful
The truth that all Christians share in the priesthood of Jesus through their Baptism. Thus we are chosen by God to pray and offer personal sacrifices to God on behalf of all mankind. We exercise our priesthood best by attending Holy Mass.
sign of Holy Orders
The bishop lays hands upon the one to be ordained priest. After the imposition of hands, the bishop prays. "We ask you, all-powerful Father, give these servants of yours the dignity of the presbyterate. Renew the Spirit of holiness within them. By your divine gift may they attain the second degree of holy orders and exemplify right conduct in their lives." The message is one of spiritual power and holiness in service to the Church.