Pope Francis: Synod was about affirming family, indissoluble marriage


The Church’s duty is to proclaim God’s mercy and love, calling call men to conversion and salvation, the Holy Father said.

However, this does not detract from the importance of formula, laws and divine commandments, he said.

“Indeed, it means upholding all the more the laws and commandments which were made for man and not vice versa.”

In addition, the pontiff noted “dogmatic questions clearly defined by the Church’s Magisterium” and spoke of the importance of “defending the family from all ideological and individualistic assaults.”

They held two highly controversial Synods for a reason: to alter non-doctrinal disciplines and “language events”. If these ecclesial events were simply designed to affirm teaching, then an encyclical would have sufficed.

Saint John Paul II didn’t need two synods to discuss women’s ordination. Instead, he issued Ordinatio Sacerdotalis.

In my humble opinion as a non-theologian, these Synods were frightfully unnecessary.

Yet St. John Paul II did call two synods to discuss the family. What would make his synods more necessary than these ones?

Also, in my opinion, which is also non-theologian-y, synods can be Good without being Necessary. I think that’s something to consider. Perhaps these popes did not convoke their synods on the family because they thought they were Necessary, but because they thought they were Good.

Official translation of the speech is here

Well this Synod was definitely needed after the manipulation of the first one. In a way, even though the first one was manipulated it did bring to light the manipulators and by doing that it also brought to light a strong voice in upholding the teachings of Jesus…the African Bishops. Cardinal Burke was also instrumental along those lines. And that insured that this Synod would not be manipulated.

There are some dioceses in Europe - particularly Germany - that are teetering on an unspoken schism and I think the Pope wants to make sure there is dialogue and ventilation.

It was called and chaired by virtually the same personnel who allegedly manipulated the first synod.

These two synods were extremely unnecessary. They caused global confusion among the faithful and non-faithful alike.

And now, both progressive and conservative camps are claiming some level of victory in the final relatio.

Camps ? Manipulation ? Confusion ?
This is nothing compared to what many children are going through.
The Church is their family.
They deserve every effort to belong ,and live in a loving community.
We are supposed to be the adults.

The Church as family is a very real but metaphorical sense of the word family.
Rather, the Church affirms the family as the primary church, “the domestic church”. The community that loves a child into existence is the community of a man and woman. God designed this institution “from the beginning” It is the primordial “ecclesia” if you will. A child deserves every effort on the part of society and the Church to affirm this unique institution, because without it a child “goes through” many injustices. The Church family is not designed to substitute for the union of a man and woman, rather it should affirm and promote it.

It is a tragedy and an injustice to children that our society cannot bring itself to affirm the family and seeks to substitute other things which cannot be substitutes.


The Family, a Communion of Persons

  1. In matrimony and in the family a complex of interpersonal relationships is set up-married life, fatherhood and motherhood, filiation and fraternity-through which each human person is introduced into the “human family” and into the “family of God,” which is the Church.
    (notice that JP2 uses quotations around other uses of the word family)

Christian marriage and the Christian family build up the Church: for in the family the human person is not only brought into being and progressively introduced by means of education into the human community, but by means of the rebirth of baptism and education in the faith the child is also introduced into God’s family, which is the Church.

The human family, disunited by sin, is reconstituted in its unity by the redemptive power of the death and Resurrection of Christ.[37] Christian marriage, by participating in the salvific efficacy of this event, constitutes the natural setting in which the human person is introduced into the great family of the Church.

The commandment to grow and multiply, given to man and woman in the beginning, in this way reaches its whole truth and full realization.

The Church thus finds in the family, born from the sacrament, the cradle and the setting in which she can enter the human generations, and where these in their turn can enter the Church.

21. Conjugal communion constitutes the foundation on which is built the broader communion of the family, of parents and children, of brothers and sisters with each other, of relatives and other members of the household.

The Christian family is also called to experience a new and original communion which confirms and perfects natural and human communion. In fact the grace of Jesus Christ, "the first-born among many brethren “[56] is by its nature and interior dynamism “a grace of brotherhood,” as St. Thomas Aquinas calls it.[57] The Holy Spirit, who is poured forth in the celebration of the sacraments, is the living source and inexhaustible sustenance of the supernatural communion that gathers believers and links them with Christ and with each other in the unity of the Church of God. The Christian family constitutes a specific revelation and realization of ecclesial communion, and for this reason too it can and should be called "the domestic Church.”[58]

It can’t be a good development when the affirmation of the family is seen as something divisive.

I don’t think the synods caused any confusion at all. What caused a scandalous degree of confusion were the leakers, the 24-hour continuous news cycle, the Internet Age where everyone can manipulate ever-present social media to advance a point of view, our culture’s addiction to instant analysis, and the media talking heads - both those who wore collars and those who didn’t - rallying attention to their point of view. I would love to see future synods abide by “Conclave rules” where they’re all locked-up and we get the final document and a bit of smoke at the end. Say what you will about Vatican II, we’ve come a long way down since “Xavier Rynne.” Had today’s media been around 1962-1965, I don’t know how the Church could have survived.

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