Deacons are minister ordained for tasks of service of the Church; they do not receive the ministerial priesthood, but ordination
confers on them important functions in the ministry of the word, divine worship, pastoral governance, and the service of charity,
tasks which they must carry out under the pastoral authority of their bishop (CCC 1596).
Deacons share in Christ’s mission and grace in a special way. The sacrament of Holy Orders marks them with an imprint which cannot
be removed and which configures them to Chris, who made himself the “deacon” or servant of all. Among other tasks, it is the task of
deacons to assist the bishop and priests in the celebration of the divine mysteries, above all the Eucharist, in the distribution of Holy
Communion, in assisting at and blessing marriages, in the proclamation of the Gospel and preaching, in presiding over funerals, and in
dedicating themselves to the various ministries of charity (CCC 1570).
Since the Second Vatican Council the Latin Church [Roman Church] has restored the diaconate “as a proper and permanent rank of the
hierarchy,” while the Churches of the East had always maintained it. This permanent diaconate, which can be conferred on married men,
constitutes an important enrichment for the Church’s mission. Indeed it is appropriate and useful in its liturgical and pastoral life or
whether in its social and charitable works, should “be strengthened by the imposition of hands which has come down form the apostles.
They would be more closely bound to the altar and their ministry would be made more fruitful through the sacramental grace of the
diaconate (CCC 1571).
Priests are united with the bishops in sacerdotal dignity and at the same time depend on them in the exercise of their pastoral
functions; they are called to be the bishops’ prudent co-workers. they form around their bishop the prebyterium which bears responsibility
with him for the particular Church. They receive from the bishop the charge of a parish community or a determinate ecclesial office.
Through the sacrament of Holy Orders priests share in the universal dimensions of the mission that Christ entrusted to the apostles.
The spiritual gift they have received in ordination prepares them, not for a limited and restricted mission, “but for the fullest, in fact
the universal mission of salvation’ to the end of the earth,’” prepared in spirit to preach the Gospel everywhere (CCC1565).
“It is in the Eucharistic cult or in the Eucharistic assembly of the faithful (synaxis) that they exercise in a supreme degree
their sacred office; there, acting in the person of Christ and proclaiming his mystery, they untie the votive offerings of the faithful to
the sacrifice of Christ their head, and in the sacrifice of the Mass they make present again and apply, until the coming of the Lord,
the unique sacrifice of the New Testament, that namely of Christ offering himself once for all a spotless victim to the Father.”
From this unique sacrifice their whole priestly ministry draws its strength (CCC1566).
The bishop received the fullness of the sacrament of Holy Orders, which integrates him into the Episcopal college and make him
the visible head of the particular Church entrusted to him. As successors of the apostles and members of the college, the bishops share
in the apostolic responsibility and mission of the whole Church under the authority of the Pope, successor of St. Peter (CCC1594).
“Episcopal consecration confers, together with the office of sanctifying, also the offices of teaching and ruling...In fact...by the
imposition of hands and through he words of consecration, the grace of the Holy Spirit is given, and a cared character is impressed in such
wise that bishops, in an eminent and visible manner, take the place of Christ himself, teacher, shepherd, and priest, and act as his
representative (in Eius persona agant).” “By virtue, therefore, of the Holy Spirit who has been given to them, bishops have
been constituted true and authentic teachers of the faith and have been made pontiffs and pastors (CCC 1558).
As Christ’s vicar, each bishop has the pastoral care of the particular Church entrusted to him, but a the same time he bears collegially
with all his brothers in the episcopacy thesolicitude for all the Churches: “Though each bishop is the lawful pastor only of the
portion of the flock entrusted to his care, as a legitimate successor of the apostles he is, by divine institution and precept,
responsible with the other bishops for the apostolic mission of the Church (CCC 1560).