Our Holy Father Pope Francis has invited the Catholic Church to embark on a journey together. Through listening and discernment rooted in the Holy Spirit, the entire people of God will be called to contribute to a process by which the Church deepens in understanding of its mission and looks toward the future.
A Synod is a gathering of the faithful in order to listen to what the Holy Spirit is saying to the Church and asking it to be and to do. This gathering can involve the faithful in different ways: pastors with lay people, bishops with the other ordained ministries, pope with bishops, etc.
Pope Francis calls it “an exercise of mutual listening, conducted at all levels of the Church and involving the entire People of God” (Pope Francis, 18 September 2021). It involves encounter, listening and the discernment of spirits. The practice of gathering to listen to the Spirit is as old as the Church herself, as shown by the "Council" of Jerusalem described in Acts of the Apostles 15. Synod-type mechanisms (listening, dialogue, discernment, deliberation) have always been used in monasteries and religious houses when making decisions. The conclaves, when cardinals meet to elect the new pope, is a synod event.
Thank you to everyone who participated in our online Synod questionnaire! The information you provided will become part of our Archdiocesan submission to the 'General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops' that will take place in October 2023. To learn more about the Synod, click here.
To learn more about the Synod, click here.