St. Irenaeus of Lyon: Who was he, and why should we care? – Detroit Catholic: Read Catholic News & Stories

Archbishop Jerome Lloyd OSJVPosted by

During the 2nd session of their autumnal conference in Baltimore in 2019, the bishops of the United States considered an appeal from Cardinal Philippe Xavier Barbarin, archbishop of Lyon, France. The cardinal was seeking support for his request that the Holy Father bestow the title “Doctor of the Church” on the cardinal’s ancient predecessor, St. Irenaeus (c.125-202), second bishop of Lyon.  Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, the now-former president of the U.S. bishops conference, expressed astonishment that the saint was not already so designated; the bishops voted their support. If the pope follows through, it will mark a major change. No martyr is on the list of doctors since, formerly, the Office and Mass for Doctors was similar to Masses composed for Confessors. Hence, as Pope Benedict XIV pointed out some years back, St. Ignatius of Antioch, St. Irenaeus of Lyon and St. Cyprian of Carthage — all martyrs, yet all responsible for important writings — are not called Doctors of the Church. The honorific, doctor (the word reflecting its original Latin meaning, “teacher”), is awarded saints whose studies and writings have significantly clarified theological and doctrinal expressions, or aided devotional aspects of the Catholic faith. At present, only 36 saints have been named doctors of the Church.

St. Irenaeus of Lyon: Who was he, and why should we care? – Detroit Catholic: Read Catholic News & Stories

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