Guiding Document for Upcoming Synod Simply Old Hat
Guiding Document for Upcoming Synod of Bishops on the Family Simply Old Hat
When Catholics heard last year that the leaders of their Church were seeking feedback on the topic of ministry to the family, they responded enthusiastically, sharing their experiences, insights and desires. Catholics believed it was a new moment in which leadership would listen and honor their voices, experiences and wisdom.
Unfortunately, this morning’s report prepared for the extraordinary Synod of Bishops to be held in October comes as a major disappointment.
The report’s blame of Catholics for not understanding Church teachings is simply old hat. Recycling the same approach and arguments we’ve heard before, the report rejects Catholics’ desire for a more relevant, practical, and inclusive church. The irrelevance of the Church’s teaching on contraception, or the lack of pastoral welcome for divorced and remarried Catholics, for example, were repeated themes in responses to the survey.
“The wisdom of the laity should be celebrated, not patronized,” says Jim FitzGerald, Executive Director. “The future of our Church will depend on leadership listening to, respecting, and honoring the experiences of the faithful.”
This entrenchment and re-articulation of the status quo continues to leave thousands of Catholics behind, dismisses the dignity of our entire Catholic family, and fails to move our church forward in a spirit of welcome and compassion.
While today’s report is a disappointment, today’s Catholics are not. They do get it: they understand perfectly well the call to love rooted in the Gospel. Catholic parishes, schools and communities across the country will continue to live with love, welcoming our brothers and sisters who’ve struggled through divorce, remarried with love, stood proudly as LGBT persons or used contraception when creating their family.
Champions of a faith they love, Catholics remain hopeful that discussion, dialogue and prayer leading up to the 2015 Synod will move Bishops to a place of pastoral leadership.
For Immediate Release: June 26, 2014