Pope abolishes honorary title of monsignor for diocesan priests under the age of 65

In a new move aimed at reforming the clergy and eliminating careerism in the Catholic Church, Pope Francis has abolished the conferral of the Pontifical Honor of ‘Monsignor’ on secular priests under the age of 65.


Not sure how this will change things, but we’ll see. Either way, IDK if it will affect the laity much.

I like it…

I have two Msgr’s at my parish and one prefers to go by Father and the other prefers to be called Msgr.

I have not heard this title in a long time, and don’t think it will have too much of an affect. One of my great-uncles was a monsignor, but he died about 18 years ago.

Wow, I know a few Monsignors, interesting move by the Pope.

It is a move in line with his attitude to papal fripperies such as ermine-edged capelets… the bestowing of titles is hardly what the Church should be concerned about…the world needs servants of the poor, not princes of the Church.

Good for him.

This is old news, no?

The point is that (these days) it’s supposed to be an honor for years and years of service that’s only given to retired or old-enough-to-retire priests, and a “young” priest under 65 shouldn’t be given it.

(The old version was that it was a title for people who were either very important diocesan officials like deans of deaneries, or who had done awesome stuff but weren’t going to be appointed bishops. Sometimes it was for guys who were on the bishop track but weren’t bishops yet.)


Several months old, at least.


No idea why it matters either way, but it was reported as Vatican news, and disseminated to the Uk bishops, this week.

But that is surely not the point…

The world needs servants of Christ. There is more to the Church than caring for material needs. While I love that Francis is emphasizing the materially poor, do not forget the spiritual poor. The mission of the Church is not to act as an NGO but to proclaim Christ in all things.

Vatican Insider article says 01/ 4/2014 on the left of the article


Couldn’t agree more … In fact, you use the Pope’s words when talking about becoming an NGO. When the Pope refers to poor he is referring to the spiritual and material. It would be wrong to focus on one and not the other. He is clearly putting emphasis on both…

You’re not suggesting that the Pope isn’t focus do spiritually poor are you?

Could some one define what careerism means?

To be more concerned about advancing up the hierarchy than doing the job of a priest which is to serve the people of God according to Jesus’ teachings

No, this is a different story. The old story talks about Pope Francis simply choosing to end the conferring of the title. The new development is that he has abolished the title completely for anyone under the age of 65 (with those who hold the title currently grandfathered in). The first was simply a personal decision, but this new development actually has the force of law and makes it permanent.

Perhaps now Pope Francis will eradicate Mother Superior, Abbot, Abbess, etc., or, minimally, grant such titles on an age-restrictive basis like Monsignor. In my childhood parish of St. Mary’s in Painesville, OH, Monsignors Galena and Misich never struck me as careerists. They were nice old gentlemen who led the parish for years before their retirement, death, and final burial at St. Mary’s Cemetery. Apparently, careerism among those aspiring to Monsignor under age 65 has become a problem in today’s Church. Guess I missed the memo.

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