Don’t spoil your bishops, faithful told

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New Alaminos Bishop Ricardo Baccay poses for a photo with members of the clergy at the St. Joseph Cathedral in Alaminos, Pangasinan on May 4, 2016. (Photo: Maria Tan/CBCPNews)

MANILA, May 5, 2016— The country’s bishops are called to be servants and not to seek power and enjoy VIP treatment, said Archbishop Socrates Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan.

In his homily at the installation of new Alaminos Bishop Ricardo Baccay, the archbishop said bishops, as  shepherds, are called “to die with Jesus.”

“Jesus is calling him to die with Him. Therefore, do not spoil him. Give him the venue to suffer with you,” Villegas said.

“Give him a chance to be an apostle of joy. He is not here as the president of an NGO. He is here as a reminder of the kingdom of God,” he said.

Papal nuncio Archbishop Giuseppe Pinto installed Baccay at the St. Joseph Cathedral on Wednesday, May 4 as the third bishop of Alaminos, a diocese of more than half-a-million Catholics.

The occasion was graced by by more than a hundred bishops, priests, religious, and thousands of churchgoers and well-wishers.

Aside from being shepherds, Villegas added that bishops are also “companions,” telling the churchgoers that Baccay “will walk, cry, laugh, and suffer with us.”

“The good shepherd does not enjoy lamb and sheep on the table. The good shepherd is willing to be killed protecting his flock,” said Villegas. (R. Lagarde / CBCPNews) 

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