Communion, Participation, and Mission
Extracted and Adapted from Preparatory Document
The journey to a Synodal Chruch will solemnly open on the 9th – 10th of October 2021 in Rome and on the following 17th of October in each particular Church.
The Preparatory Document is a very valuable Resource as we go forward together on the journey to a Synodal Church. It outlines in clear and inspirational guidelines how the way forward is decisive for the life and mission of the Chruch.
This Preparatory Document is at the service of the synodal journey, especially as a tool to facilitate the first phase of listening to and consulting the People of God, in the particular Churches (October 2021 – April 2022).
It is precisely this path of synodality which God expects of the Church of the third millennium.
Our “journeying together” is, in fact, what most effectively enacts and manifests the nature of the Church as the pilgrim and missionary People of God. (Pope Francis)
The Preparatory Document addresses:
The Questions to be asked and the Steps required in order to grow as a Synodal Church
The Openness that is necessary in the process as we listen to the Holy Spirit who “blows where it wills; you can hear the sound it makes, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes” (Jn 3:8)
The Global Context we must embrace within a historical context marked by epochal changes in society and by a crucial transition in the life of the Church, which cannot be ignored: it is within the folds of the complexity of this context, in its tensions and contradictions, that we are called to “scrutinize the signs of the times and interpret them in the light of the Gospel” (GS, no. 4).
The Partnerships that will signpost the path to a Synodal Church , with social dialogue, reconciliation, reconstruction of democracy… regenerating relationships with all Christian communities, with peoples of other denominations and religions, with civil organizations, popular movements, etc.
The Theological References that help to inform and deepen our understanding of Synodality as it has evolved over centuries.
The Biblical Texts that will nourish meditation and Prayer as we negotiate this journey. Here we will have a chance to reread the experiences of lived synodality and to share the discovery.
The Handbook: To concretely accompany the organization of the work, a methodological Handbook, annexed to this Preparatory Document and available on the dedicated hosting website, is proposed.
The Address of Pope Francis
We are encouraged to read
- Address given by Pope Francis on the 17th October, 2015, commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the Institution of the Synod of Bishops.
- Document – Synodality in the Mission and Life of the Church (Prepared by the International Theological Commission and published in 2018.)
We pray that we may find creative and inspiring ways to partner in hope and mercy, as we evolve the partway to a Synodal Church of
Communication, Participation and Mission