(10) 2 Bishops have three main responsibilities:
- To Teach. A bishop is the principal teacher in his diocese and has a responsibility to preach the Word of God to his people. He must ensure that those delegated to teach in his name, namely priests, teachers, catechists and others, teach the truth.
- To Govern. This refers to meeting the needs of the local community (material, social, personal and spiritual) as well as ensuring that church laws are observed. He is ultimately responsible for training and supplying priests for parishes, for the finances of the diocese and for all church property. A bishop has the power to make church laws and approved by the Executive Council, be a judge in church matters and to enforce the observance of these laws. These laws generally relate to worship, preaching, administration of the sacraments, safeguarding the faith and morals of the faithful and religious instruction.
- To Sanctify. A bishop is responsible for ensuring that the sacraments are administered and has the special authority to ordain priests and to confirm. It is usually the case, then, for a bishop to ordain the priests who are to serve in his diocese and to travel around the diocese and administer the Sacrament of Confirmation. He must also ensure that mass is celebrated in the diocese every Sunday and on major feast days.
10:a) Shall be appointed by the Patriarch on the advice of the Archbishop and shall hold this office at the pleasure of the Patriarch and the Ordination and Consecration Committee or until appointed to another office of higher status. Shall be Ordained and or Consecrated, Licensed and Registered as such.
10:b) Shall assist the Archbishop in the day to day function of the Church.
10:c) Shall assist with baptism, Funerals, Ordinations and any other function deem fit by the Archbishop
10:d) Shall be the armour bearer to the Archbishop
10:e) The Bishop shall assist in the preparation whenever someone is to succeed The Archbishop.
10:f) They are to strive to build in Christ a fraternal community, in which GOD is sought and loved above all.
10:g) They are to admonish the restless, console the faint hearted and be patient with all.
10:h) A Bishop shall be appointed the assistant to the Archbishop by the Patriarch and shall hold office at the discretion of the Archbishop.
10:i) His Lordship the Bishop is an official of the highest order, who is the superintendent over other clergymen.
10:j) They are the assistants to His All Holiness the Patriarch and His Grace the Archbishop and whenever possible to His Eminence the Cardinal in their administrative and ceremonial duties.
10:k) All Bishops shall be seated on the Executive Council.
10:l) A Bishop must attain the age of fifty (50) years to be appointed an Archbishop and must hold the office of Bishop for a minimum of 5 years.
10:m) All bishops are important because they are successors to the Apostles, and have the fullness of Christ’s priesthood.
THE DUTIES OF THE BISHOP
The duties of the bishop are as follows:
6:D-a. TO RULE THE CHURCH
1 Tim 5:17; Heb. 13:7,17. The ruling here, however, is not autocratic ruling (2 Pet. 5:3), but only the rule of oversight and leadership. In our consideration of the church, we have shown that the church is a democracy, receiving and excluding members, and managing its own affairs. And we have pointed out that “ruling elders,” in the modern sense are not authorized by 1 Tim 5:17.
6:D-b. TO TEACH
1 Tim 3:2; 2 Tim 4:2; Titus 1:9; Heb 13:7. This is the principal work of the preacher. Nothing should be allowed to interfere with it. If he fails in this, he has failed in all. Everything else is secondary to the work of teaching.
6:D-c. TO SHEPHERD THE FLOCK
Eph 4:11. In this passage we have the bishop called a pastor. This means that he is a shepherd. He is to have the same interest in and unselfish devotion to his flock as was the case with the ancient shepherd and his sheep. He is to feed them, shield them from danger, comfort them in distress, and strengthen them when weak.
6:D-d. TO ADMINISTER THE ORDINANCES
It seems in keeping with the nature of the bishop’s office to consider the administration of the ordinances as a peculiar function of bishops. And, as we have remarked before of baptism, so we may now say of both baptism and the Lord’s Supper, that we have no certain indication that any but bishops ever administered them.
 The bishop is not an official priest. 1 Pet. 2:5, 9; Rev. 5:10. The order of Ministers is ‘scriptural’”
 Let those who think that the requirement that a bishop “be blameless, the husband of one wife” demands that he be a married man, reflect upon the fact, first of all, that such a demand would require the immediate resignation of a pastor whose wife dies. Moreover, let these note, in the second place, that Titus 1:6 adds, “having faithful children, not accused of riot or unruly.” If the foregoing requirement means that a bishop must be married, then this one means that it is not enough for a man to be married—he is not to be ordained as a bishop until he has children and they are saved. Let’s try to be consistent, brethren.
1 Concerning Requirements for Bishop According to Holy Scripture
A Bishop is called by God and The Mystical Order of Spiritual Baptist Inc, 2012 to be a shepherd who feeds the flock entrusted to his care. A Bishop is an overseer of the flock and as such, is called to propagate, to teach, and to uphold and defend the faith as set out in Article 1.1 of the Constitution of The Mystical Order of Spiritual Baptist Inc,2012, willingly and as God wants him to; not greedy for money, but eager to serve; not lording it over those entrusted to his care, but being a wholesome example to the entire flock of Christ (1 Peter 5:2-3). These requirements are in addition to the requirements set forth in these Orders for Deacon (1 Tim 3:8-13) and for Minister (1 Tim 3:1-7; 5:17; Titus 1:6-9).
2 Concerning the Ministry of Bishops
By the tradition of Christ’s One, Holy, Mystical, and Spiritual Church, Bishops are consecrated for the whole Church and are successors to the Apostles and Apostolic Head through the grace of the Holy Spirit given to them.
They are chief missionaries and chief pastors, guardians and teachers of doctrine, and administrators of godly discipline and governance.
3 Concerning Criteria for the Episcopate
To be a suitable candidate for the episcopate, a person must comply with the applicable Orders of the Church and must:
- a) Be a person of strong faith and prayer;
- b) Be pious, have good morals and exhibit Godly character;
- c) Have a zeal for evangelism;
- d) Have demonstrated evidence of the fruit of the Holy Spirit;
- e) Possess the knowledge and gifts which equip him to fulfil the office;
- f) Be held in good esteem by the faithful;
- g) Be a Christian Believer at least thirty (30) years old;
- h) Not be divorced and remarried, and whose spouse has not been previously married and divorced, unless the Patriarch consents to waive this condition.
- i) Have demonstrated the ability to lead and grow The Mystical Order of Spiritual Baptist Inc, 2012.
4 Concerning Consecration of a Bishop, The patriarch and presiding prelate shall always be the chief consecrator, and the Archbishop and Apostolic Head his deputy Consecrator.
No person shall be consecrated to the office of Bishop by fewer than three bishops of the Church, present together and joining in the act of consecration, of whom one shall be the Archbishop of the Church or a bishop of the Church appointed to act on his behalf. In addition, the consecration of a Bishop shall be in compliance with the Mystical Orders and all relevant policies and rules of the Church in relation to the consecration of bishops.