Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon is a trivia game based on the concept of the small world phenomenon and rests on the assumption that any individual can be linked through his or her film roles to actor Kevin Bacon within six steps. – WikiPedia
This weekend after having gone to a Vigil Mass we heard on Catholic radio that there was going to be a Mass celebrating St. Lorenzo Ruiz and that our new bishop, Bishop Felipe J. Estévez, would be there. So this was a good opportunity to both celebrate the first Filipino saint with the Filipino-American community and to see our new bishop.
As the bishop was celebrating Mass the theme of how Bishops are successor to the Apostles came kept coming to mind. I was thinking this was much more awesome than the degrees of separation to Kevin Bacon. I see this on a couple of levels. For most bishops there is just one degree of separation between them and the pope since many will have met the pope at least once in Ad Limina visits and other occasions. Our priests having one degree of separation with our bishops give us at least two degrees of separation with the Holy Father. Now the number of degrees of separation between our bishops and the Apostles is a much larger number, but Apostolic succession shows that these steps of separation do arrive back to the Apostles. This also of course applies also to Jesus and that ultimately Apostolic succession points back he who ordained the Apostles in the first place. St. Catherine of Siena use to call the Holy Father the “Sweet Christ on Earth”.
As cool as that is, it is much cooler that also in reality there is no degree of separation between us and Jesus. We can reach out and talk to him at anytime we want. The only degree of separation is a mental one as only we can separate ourselves from Christ. Yet even if we do this, he is still there waiting for us to knock on his door once again.
There is also — in principle, at least — at most six degrees of separation between any two Catholics. Me:my pastor:our bishop:the pope:your bishop:your pastor:you.
So if you ever need to get a message to me, you know how.
^ Can I “Like” that comment? 🙂
Why insert your pastor in the mix? Me> bishop> pope> bishop> you