Tuesday 22 October 2019

Synod 2020. Number 20

Our Diocesan Synod here in Liverpool Archdiocese is now at the point of having discerned four themes on which we are invited to submit proposals. The four themes are:

To encourage our thoughts these are the areas we are directed to under this first theme:

What people said:
  • "Gifts of lay people should be appropriately used"
  • "Priesthood is valued"
  • "Young people need particular support as they discern their choices"
  • "Priests need to be better supported"
  • "Role of women in the Church should be celebrated"
  • "Be more inclusive and welcoming of diversity"
  • "Young people have a vital and valuable contribution to make"
  • And much more!
In this Synod Theme we reflect on the vocation that God gives to each of us.

In becoming the Church that God is calling us to be:
  • What different models of leadership in parishes could we explore?
  • How should we encourage and equip people to use their different gifts in mission and ministry?
  • How do we enable people of all ages, especially young people, to grow, flourish and contribute as part of our communities?
  • What needs to change about the way priests are recruited, trained, appointed and supported?
  • What structures need to be put in place to ensure effective collaboration between ordained and lay people?

There is much here that presumes a particular direction of travel and much that one might think is rather starkly missing. I'm presenting the proposals below as my own and share them here as my own thoughts on the direction we might take.


Programmes or courses to help lay people in their primary mission of sanctifying the world in which they live, amongst their families and in their workplaces. (As insisted on by the 2nd Vatican Council)

Active participation in the liturgy. Not be “doing” lots of thing or taking over the priest’s jobs but by a deeper sense of prayer.

Re-affirming the proper leadership role of the priest in the  parish.

Let priests be priests, rather than usurp the priest’s liturgical and leadership roles with protestantised lay leadership.

Re-affirm the ministry of lay people that is exemplified by the spiritual and practical sodalities where they most properly exercise their ministry: the Legion of Mary, the SVP, Young Christian Workers, Opus Dei, Knights of St Columbas etc.

Laity taking responsibility for the “secular” parts of the everyday life of the parish: maintenance, secretarial etc.

We welcome diversity of people (that is Catholic), but there can be no compromise with diversity of opinion where it is in opposition to the teaching of the God’s Church.

A much stronger emphasis on recruiting Vocations to the Priesthood.

A much stronger emphasis on recruiting to the Religious Life—one area where the role of women has been tragically neglected.

A much stronger emphasis on the vocation of Christian Marriage: a concept now so alien in our society that Our Lord’s teaching is now in fact an alterative lifestyle choice in this area.

As the laity’s Vocation is in the world, an encouragement and emphasis on Catholics engaging in politics for the common good, so that the Church might influence the world instead of the secular world setting the agenda.

A reaffirmation of the absolute minimum actions required of Catholics: the precepts of the Church: 
To attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation; 
To fast and abstain from meat on appointed days; 
To confess one’s sins at least once a year; 
To receive Holy Eucharist during the Easter time; 
To contribute to the support of the Church; To observe the laws of the Church concerning marriage; 
To join in the missionary spirit and apostolate of the Church Baptism.


Neil Addison said...

'More Welcoming of Diversity' I assume this is a call for more Traditional Latin Masses in parishes or am I just misunderstanding

Joanna Francesca said...

Unfortunately, the lay activist isn't interested in creating community, except amongst his friends, just in wielding power. Hence, we have a church with no community and the ignorant making decisions for the silenced majority