In his weekly general audience, Pope Francis explained that the Church is based on a hierarchy because Jesus designed it that way. But just as important, he said, the Church also has a maternal side through its Bishops.
"A Church cannot be healthy if the faithful, deacons and priests are not united with their Bishop. A Church that's not united with its Bishop, is an ill Church. Jesus wanted this union between the faithful and the Bishop.”
He added that Jesus wanted His apostles to be close to Him as one unit and one family. Following that same model, Bishops, he said should stand with the Pope.
"Bishops have to have so many virtues. It's not easy, it's not...Because we are sinners. We rely on our prayers. Through prayers, at least we can be closer to what St. Paul recommended to all Bishops. Do you agree? Will you pray for us?”
Being a Bishop, he added, is not about recognition or showing off, but rather about carrying out a higher role of service.
"It's sad to see a man who seeks this position and does so many things to achieve it. Once he's there, he's no good. He just shows off. He lives only for his vanity.”
At the end of the audience, the Pope announced that on June 21, 2015 he will visit the city of Turin to pray before the Holy Shroud. It will be on display next year, to mark 200 years since the birth of St. John Bosco, founder of the Salesians.