And now? We hope that the months that separate us from the second session, in October 2024, will allow everyone to concretely participate in the dynamics of missionary communion that is indicated by the word “synod.” It is not an ideology, but an experience rooted in the Apostolic Tradition. As the Holy Father reminded us at the beginning of this process: “If an ecclesial praxis that expresses synodality is not developed (…), promoting the true participation of each one, the communion and the mission are at risk to remain as a unified term.” little abstract” (October 9, 2021). The challenges are many and the questions are many: the summary of the first session will explain the points of agreement reached, highlight the open questions and show how to continue the work.
In order to progress in her recognition, the Church must listen to everyone, starting with the poorest. That requires, in turn, a path of conversion, which is also a path of praise: “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding, and you have revealed them.” to the little ones” (Lc 10,21). It is about listening to those who do not have the right to speak in society or who feel alienated, also from the Church. Listen to people who are victims of racism in all its forms, especially in some indigenous regions whose cultures are being humiliated. Above all, the Church in our time has the duty to listen, in the spirit of conversion, to those who are victims of abuse committed by members of the ecclesiastical body, and to take concrete and structural measures to prevent it from happening again. .
The Church must also listen to the laity, women and men, all called to holiness because of their baptismal vocation: the testimony of catechists, who in many situations are the first to announce the Gospel; the simplicity and enthusiasm of children, the enthusiasm of young people, their questions and their requests; the dreams of the old, their wisdom and their memory. The Church must listen to families, to their educational concerns, to the Christian witness they offer to the world today. The voices of those who want to be included in lay ministries or in participatory decision-making bodies should be welcomed. The Church especially needs, in the development of synodal recognition, to collect more than the words and experience of ordained ministers: priests, first assistants of bishops, whose sacramental ministry is necessary for life throughout the body; the deacons, who through their ministry represent the concern of the whole Church for the service of the weakest. He must also allow himself to be challenged by the prophetic voice of the consecrated life, a careful guardian of the calls of the Spirit. And he must also be attentive to those who do not share his faith, but who seek the truth, and to whom the Spirit is present and active, He who offers “all the possibility to, in a form known only to God, interact -with. with this mystery of Christmas” (Joy and hope, 22).
“The world in which we live, and in which we are called to love and serve also in its contradictions, asks the Church to strengthen unity in all aspects of its mission. The proper path of synodality is the path that God expects of the Church in the third millennium” (Pope Francis, October 17, 2015). We must not be afraid to answer this call. The Virgin Mary, first on the way, accompanies us on our journey. In joy and pain He shows us his Son and invites us to trust. He, Jesus, is our hope!