October 6, 2015

A Faithful Catholic's Guide to Surviving the Synod on the Family (By Way of Father Zuhlsdorf)

Fr. John Zuhlsdorf gives sage advice about surviving the reporting (and misreporting) on the 2015 Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the Family. Fr. Zuhlsdorf:
On the one hand, I am not worried that the Synod will attempt to change God’s and the Church’s teaching.  It can’t.  The Synod can’t order pizza unless the Pope says so.  On the other hand, I am worried that the widely reported antics that might take place at the Synod will create an atmosphere of expectation that God’s and Church’s teaching can change and that, based on that expectation, people will start doing whatever the hell they want. ...
Neither the Synod, nor Pope Francis, can change the Church's long held doctrines — but they could undermine such doctrines and thus sow confusion.

St. Corbinian's Bear considers Francis' opening remarks to the Synod Fathers, and notes the following passage (an intentional obfuscation?):
To carry out her mission in charity, not pointing a finger in judgment of others, but – faithful to her nature as a mother – conscious of her duty to seek out and care for hurting couples with the balm of acceptance and mercy; to be a “field hospital” with doors wide open to whoever knocks in search of help and support; to reach out to others with true love, to walk with our fellow men and women who suffer, to include them and guide them to the wellspring of salvation. ...
Robert Royal at the Catholic Thing offers wisdom in "Five Guiding Principles for the Synod". The five principles in summation:
1st Principle:  Be Cautious About Drawing Large Conclusions.
2nd Principle: But Don’t Be Too Cautious.
3rd Principle:  Look out for claims of a false sense of freedom in the Church.
4th Principle:  False freedom corrupts concepts like love, mercy, charity.
5th Principle:  Increase Your Prayer, Fasting, and Almsgiving.
N. B.: I highly recommend all three bloggers and their respective sites. You may be well familiar with them. If not, consider making them part of your daily web itinerary.

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