In the Catholic Church, a bishop is an ordained minister who holds the fullness of the sacrament of holy orders and is responsible for teaching doctrine, governing Catholics in his jurisdiction, and sanctifying the world and representing the Church. Catholics trace the origins of the office of bishop to the apostles, who it is believed were endowed with a special charism by the Holy Spirit at Pentecost.〔(【引用サイトリンク】title=Catechism 1556 )〕 Catholics believe this special charism has been transmitted through an unbroken succession of bishops by the laying on of hands in the sacrament of Holy Orders.〔(【引用サイトリンク】title=Catechism 1555–1556 )〕
Diocesan bishops—known as eparchs in the Eastern Catholic Churches—are assigned to govern local regions within the Catholic Church known as dioceses in the Latin Church and eparchies in the Eastern Rites. Bishops are collectively known as the College of Bishops and can hold such additional titles as archbishop, cardinal, patriarch, or pope. As of 2009 there were approximately 5,100 bishops total in the Latin and Eastern churches of the Catholic Church.
Bishops are always men.〔(【引用サイトリンク】url=http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/apost_letters/1994/documents/hf_jp-ii_apl_19940522_ordinatio-sacerdotalis_en.html )〕 In addition, Canon 378 § 1 requires that a candidate for the episcopacy should be:
#outstanding in solid faith, good morals, piety, zeal for souls, wisdom, prudence, and human virtues, and endowed with other qualities which make him suitable to fulfill the office in question;
#of good reputation;
#at least thirty-five years old;
#ordained to the presbyterate for at least five years;
#in possession of a doctorate or at least a licentiate in sacred scripture, theology, or canon law from an institute of higher studies approved by the Apostolic See, or at least truly expert in the same disciplines.
== Diocesan bishops or eparchs ==
The traditional role of a bishop is to act as head of a diocese or eparchy. Dioceses vary considerably in geographical size and population. A wide variety of dioceses around the Mediterranean Sea which received the Christian faith early are rather compact in size, while those in areas more recently evangelized, as in some parts of Sub-Saharan Africa, South America and the Far East, tend to be much larger and more populous. Within his own diocese a Latin Church bishop may use pontifical vestments and regalia, but may not do so in another diocese without, at least, the presumed consent of the appropriate ordinary.〔(【引用サイトリンク】title=Canon 390 )〕
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