- May 15, 2021
Pope Francis’s repeated calls for mercy and for the church to hear voices from the peripheries is an invitation to accept that the Holy Spirit speaks not just to church leaders but to all the baptized, Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin of Newark, New Jersey, said in an online lecture.
A true synodal path comes from making concrete choices that give way to the action of the Holy Spirit, not from following spur-of-the-moment concepts that adhere to the latest trends, Pope Francis said.
As the Catholic Church in different countries begins various synodal processes, the conference of Latin American bishops could not stay behind, and has launched its own Ecclesial Assembly.
Some are warning that a Synodal Path envisioned as an effort to restore the confidence lost by the abuse scandals and to promote internal church debate could lead many Germans into schism.
A top Vatican official, and one of the most celebrated examples of Pope Francis’s commitment to hearing the voices of women, has called the concept of synodality the pope promotes a process of empowerment for the entire Church.
This week the Italian bishops set to work on the initial preparations of their upcoming “synodal journey,” which was explicitly asked for by Pope Francis and will likely aim to get Catholics in the country on the same page with the pope’s agenda.
Ireland’s Catholic bishops have announced they will embark on a “synodal pathway” for the Church and hold a National Synodal Assembly within the next five years.
Recognizing the pandemic has taken its toll on discipleship and could lead to the faithful in the Diocese of Dallas becoming complacent, Bishop Edward J. Burns announced he will convene a synod in the diocese Dec. 12, the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.