The Archdiocese will collate feedback from parishes and gather again a further gathering in the Carrickdale Hotel on Thursday December 1st. The diocesan feedback from that meeting will inform the national input at the Continental Ecclesial Assembly that will take place in Prague from the 5th to the 12th of February, 2023.
Plus there will be a Meeting about the whole process in the Pastoral Area, during Advent. Please check back for further details.
Recently, at the end of a Sunday Angelus, the Holy Father announced that the upcoming 16th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops will be held in two ‘moments’, that is, in two sessions, spaced one year apart: the first from October 4 to 29, 2023, the second in October 2024.
This decision stems from the desire that the theme of a Synodal Church, because of its breadth and importance, might be the subject of prolonged discernment not only by the members of the Synodal Assembly, but by the whole Church.
This listening process began in 2021 by the local Churches, that is, by the People of God gathered around their Pastors, and has culminated in the release of The Document for the Continental Stage (DCS), which is the fruit of the ‘Syntheses’ (listening & reflecting) resulting from the consultation of the People of God in the first phase of the synodal process – and which will be the focus of the listening, dialogue and discernment of the Continental Synodal Assemblies (which will be held between January-March 2023).
There will be a Diocesan Gathering in the Carrickdale Hotel on Thursday December 1st to discuss this document and provide feedback which will inform the national input at the Continental Ecclesial Assembly that will take place in Prague from the 5th to the 12th of February, 2023. Please contact the Parish Office is you would like to attend this meeting.
You are invited to gather – in person – at The Forge, Drumshallon on Wednesday 23rd February, 2022 at 8pm – to participate in a consultative process. All Welcome.
As many of you already know, Pope Francis has called on the Global Catholic Church to engage in a process of ‘Listening’ in a new way to the voice of the Spirit, about how the Church is to face the challenges of the future.
Each Country, and each Diocese has been asked to organise opportunities for all people to participate in the process;
Together, all the baptised are the subject of the sensus fidelium, the living voice of the People of God. At the same time, in order to participate fully in the act of discerning, it is important for the baptised to hear the voices of other people in their local context, including people who have left the practice of the faith, people of other faith traditions, people of no religious belief, etc. For as the Council declares: “The joys and the hopes, the griefs and the anxieties of the men of this age, especially those who are poor or in any way afflicted, these are the joys and the hopes, the griefs and the anxieties of the followers of Christ. Indeed, nothing genuinely human fails to raise an echo in their hearts” (GS, 1). For this reason, while all the baptized are specifically called to take part in the Synodal Process, no one – no matter their religious affiliation – should be excluded from sharing their perspective and experiences, insofar as they want to help the Church on her synodal journey of seeking what is good and true. This is especially true of those who are most vulnerable or marginalized.
Our Country has a website dedicated to the process – you can find it here
The Armagh Diocesan Synodal Core Group is very mindful of the difficulties Covid-19 has posed for parishes. It has organised a virtual consultation that will broadcast twice a day 3pm and 8.30pm, Monday to Friday, from the 7th February to the 25th February on the St. Patrick’s Cathedral Webcam.
The video can be tuned into at those times by anyone who wishes to learn more about the synod and to take time to reflect on the questions posed. It lasts approximately 45 minutes and can be used by individuals, family groups, parish groups and indeed any group or organisation who wants to be involved.
Finally, our Pastoral Area, St. Colmcille’s (The parishes of Clogherhead, Monasterboice, Termonfechin and Togher), all have the chance to gather – in person – at The Forge, Drumshallon on Wednesday 23rd February, 2022 at 8pm – to participate in a consultative process. All Welcome.
In this sense, it is clear that the purpose of this Synod is not to produce more documents. Rather, it is intended to inspire people to dream about the Church we are called to be, to make people’s hopes flourish, to stimulate trust, to bind up wounds, to weave new and deeper relationships, to learn from one another, to build bridges, to enlighten minds, warm hearts, and restore strength to our hands for our common mission (PD, 32). Thus the objective of this Synodal Process is not only a series of exercises that start and stop, but rather a journey of growing authentically towards the communion and mission that God calls the Church to live out in the third millennium. This journey together will call on us to renew our mentalities and our ecclesial structures in order to live out God’s call for the Church amid the present signs of the times. Listening to the entire People of God will help the Church to make pastoral decisions that correspond as closely as possible to God’s will (ITC, Syn., 68) The ultimate perspective to orient this synodal path of the Church is to serve the dialogue of God with humanity (DV, 2) and to journey together the kingdom of God (cf.LG, 9; RM, 20). In the end, this Synodal Process seeks to move towards a Church that is more fruitfully at the service of the coming of the kingdom of heaven.
Thank you to the priests, religious and parishes who responded to the invitation to attend the ceremony in St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Armagh, on Wednesday 30th June, or who watched it online.
The homily, in particular, provides information on the nature of the Synodal Pathway that we are undertaking at a diocesan, national and international level. It is important that when the conversation and consultation begins in every parish and religious community, people will be informed and up to date.
We will have a listening process in the diocese over the next two years in preparation for the Diocesan Assembly in 2024, but parallel to that there will be a consultation in the coming months for the Synod in Rome in 2023 and over the next few years for the National Assembly or Assemblies in 2026.
Full Closing Ceremony
The Diocesan Website for the process can be accessed here;