A bishop is a Catholic Church’s leader of a diocese. I don’t know much about other faith or religion so I would just confine my definition within Catholicism. A diocese is a district or a community assigned to a bishop for pastoral caring.
According to portlanddiocese.org and may I quote “ A bishop is regarded by Catholics as a shepherd, a successor of the apostles whom Jesus Christ chose to carry on the work of His church. A bishop is called to exercise a three-fold office within the Catholic Church: to teach, govern, and sanctify”.
The first responsibility is to teach. That is to teach the Catholic faith within the diocese. The second responsibility is to govern. That is to govern the catholic parishes under his care and make sure that pastoral missions or projects are accomplished. The third responsibility is to sanctify. That is to continue the salvation work of Christ. The bishop does what he can to evangelize the whole diocese, make as many people pure and holy and to save as many souls as possible. from eternal damnation
With these heavy responsibilities only God can choose a bishop. There is one bishop I have known recently who I believe had been very dedicated in fulfilling his responsibilities. He is not from this generation. He lived thru 17th and 18th centuries. He is Bishop Filippo Tipaldi.
Bishop Filippo Tipaldi was introduced to us by our friend Sister Celina, who authored His biography. Sister Celina is an Italian nun who is a member of Oblate Sisters of St. Francis Xavier which was founded by no other than Bishop Filippo Tipaldi. My wife promised Sr. Celina to dedicate an article for Bishop Filippo Tipaldi. So, here it is.
To know more about our friends from Oblate Sisters of St. Francis Xavier click this link.
Who is Bishop Filippo Tipaldi?
Filippo Antonio Sabato Tipaldi was born on March 23, 1669 to Nicola Tipaldi and Anna Di Benedetto. He was baptized on the same date by Fr. Giovanni D’ Orse Panze in San Giovanni in Corte Church.
He studied canon and civil law at University “La Sapienza” and obtained the degree at the age of 23. On December 20, 1692 Bishop Tipaldi was ordained as priest by Cardinal Cantelmo in the artistic cathedral of Naples
On June 20, 1717 Filippo Tipaldi was ordained bishop by Cardinal Lorenzo Corsini who would become Pope Clement XII in 1758. This was the start of Bishop Tipaldi’s episcopal ministry. He was the bishop of Ariano, Italy from 1717 to 1748.
Guided by the document entitled “Perfectae Caritatis” from second Vatican council or simply Vatican II, Bishop Tipaldi founded the Conservatory of St. Francis Xavier on December 25, 1732. The conservatory was opened for young girls who want to consecrate themselves to God in poverty ,chastity and obedience. On the same day but in the year 1741, the bishop provided the constitution or the rules of the conservatory and assigned Fr. Lucio di Maio as its spiritual director. This conservatory is now known as the Oblate Sisters of St. Francis Xavier.
Bishop Filippo Tipaldi died at the age of 79 on February 20, 1748 in Portici, Naples.
How is Filippo Tipaldi as a bishop ?
Bishop Filippo Tipaldi had been truly dedicated to his episcopal ministry. He was a good teacher of faith. He implemented a regular formation for the clergy. He asked his clergy to aspire to be holy by praying daily the Liturgy of the Hours, devoting themselves to Mary and the Eucharist and by regularly reading Sacred Scriptures. He authored and taught the rules for the congregation he founded.
Bishop Tipaldi governed his diocese with love and compassion. He celebrated a yearly diocesan synod to pray with the people and know their conditions. He provided baptismal font to all the parishes and led the repair of the diocesan seminary, the cathedral and many churches under his care after the 1732 earthquake.
Bishop Tipaldi’s mission of sanctification has been blessed by the Lord even after he lived and until now. The Oblate Sisters of St Francis Xavier whose members are consecrated to God is a proof of this.
Significant Dates for Bishop Filippo Tipaldi
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- Roman Catholic Dioces of Portland
Definition of a bishop
- Biography of Msgr. Filippo Tipaldi.
By ELENA DE GREGORIO (Sr. Celina)