Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Two synods and life in the church community

English: Pope John Paul II on 12 August 1993 i...
English: Pope John Paul II on 12 August 1993 in Denver (Colorado) Español: Papa Juan Pablo II el 12 de agosto de 1993 en Denver, Colorado. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
At the  moment two synods may fetch the news.
the most spoke off is the meeting of the Catholic bishops at the Vatican. the other one is of the Church of England. They have a General Synod that experienced such a struggle over women bishops, only 28 per cent of the clergy voted on to it were women, and not one of them was under 40. Those who were openly part of racial, disability, or LGBT minority groups were woefully under-represented in the decisions that the Church made about them.

In Church Times Revd Sally Hitchiner is Chaplain to Brunel University, London, argues that we need to put our votes where our tweets are.
She writes:
The challenge and opportunity that we are facing now is that the General Synod seems to be leading and speaking for the Church more than the rest of us are. More column inches are given to Synod statements than to any other branch of the Church. The Reform and Renewal movement is Synod-led, not merely bishop-led. The opportunities for this Synod to have an impact on daily life for us all are considerable.
> Why the Synod is important

After Pope Francis‘s tour of the United States he looked having become much older and being very slow when he opened the Vatican’s synod on marriage and family topics.

Last year bishops gathered for an extraordinary synod on the family and they will continue on that issue to see what can be amended after the church-fathers spoke with their priests and flock. This synod should end with a document, and possibly from that document Francis will write an apostolic exhortation.

The very conservative  John Paul II presented some years ago the "Theology of the Body" but all that the Catholic church did seemed very far away from what Catholics were doing and believing. In Belgium every Catholic seems to make up his own sort of belief and does not really follow up what the Pope describes. The Catholic Church did not help it by not heaving an ear for divorced Catholics who still wanted to receive communion or to get remarried for the church.
The Catholic understanding of marriage is lofty enough that a “cheap grace” that gives up too early defrauds the recipients from a great gift – the strength that comes with fighting through hardship. But so many people, mostly women, have been damaged unspeakably by an ethic that is unrelenting in its call to keep returning to a bad relationship that the Church has to be sensitive to the need to protect its more vulnerable members. {Writing straight with our crooked lines: #Synod15, family, and the hot issues; Reading Francis}
writes somebody who claims to have studied Catholic social thought in graduate school 20 years ago.

When we do see and hear Pope Francis I  we get the impression he is really some one who is willing to listen to the ordinary folks and to come closer to them. this pope also wants to show the importance of forgiving love, and this could help into the guidelines for openness for those who went wrong in their life and want to restart again.

Too often the clerics had forgotten how the church community is made up by those people who walk every day on the street as unnoticed ordinary human beings, with their small and big problems in life. For much too long the church-leaders have been absent from their real life and did not have enough ears fro their little and big problems. Perhaps there might change something now.

+++