Rome synod seeks ways to bring youth back into Church fold

  • strict warning: Only variables should be passed by reference in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/captcha/captcha.inc on line 61.
  • strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 1113.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_field::query() should be compatible with views_handler::query($group_by = false) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_field.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of content_handler_field::element_type() should be compatible with views_handler_field::element_type($none_supported = false, $default_empty = false, $inline = false) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/cck/includes/views/handlers/content_handler_field.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_sort::options_validate() should be compatible with views_handler::options_validate($form, &$form_state) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_sort.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_sort::options_submit() should be compatible with views_handler::options_submit($form, &$form_state) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_sort.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_sort::query() should be compatible with views_handler::query($group_by = false) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_sort.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter::options_validate() should be compatible with views_handler::options_validate($form, &$form_state) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_filter.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter::query() should be compatible with views_handler::query($group_by = false) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_filter.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_plugin_query::options_submit() should be compatible with views_plugin::options_submit($form, &$form_state) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/plugins/views_plugin_query.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_plugin_style_default::options() should be compatible with views_object::options() in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/plugins/views_plugin_style_default.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_plugin_row::options_validate() should be compatible with views_plugin::options_validate(&$form, &$form_state) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/plugins/views_plugin_row.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 1113.
  • strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 1113.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_field_user::init() should be compatible with views_handler_field::init(&$view, $options) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/modules/user/views_handler_field_user.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 1113.
  • strict warning: Only variables should be passed by reference in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/captcha/captcha.inc on line 61.
  • strict warning: Only variables should be passed by reference in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/captcha/captcha.inc on line 61.

Rome synod seeks ways to bring youth back into Church fold

By Arnaud Bevilacqua and Nicolas Senèze/ la-croix.com

After its first week of work, the Synod assembly on Young People in Rome that runs through October still has a long way to go to achieve its aim of rebuilding links between young people and the Church.

Nevertheless, the bishops have already begun to appreciate how the Church's culture has gradually distanced itself from young people.

Concern has began to spread among participants that the final document to be transmitted to Pope Francis will not be effective in reaching out to young people.
"We need to reflect on the way the synod is presenting itself to young people," said Melbourne Archbishop Peter Comensoli on Oct. 9 as he read the report from his English-speaking workshop to the assembly.

Power of video
The group proposed the synod should each week publish a short video of "less than three minutes" and "fewer than 40 words" outlining its work in various languages.
An example of this was a short interview with Pope Francis that Lyon Auxiliary Bishop Emmanuel Gobilliard made for distribution via social media. The pontiff willingly made himself available for the project.

In his report, Archbishop Comensoli also invited the synod to send a direct message to young people, as did many other synod fathers.

He proposed that two bishops should work with two young auditors to draft the message, which would be issued in addition to the final document.

It would be "a simple and direct message" that would be based on concrete issues, Archbishop Comensoli noted.

"We want to listen to you. We are sorry for our mistakes. We love you and have confidence in you. We want to move forward with you in hope," he suggested.
These points provide a good summary of the synod's opening week, which focused on studying the first part of the Instrumentum Laboris(working document) on young people today.

Many criticisms were made of the document for its shortcomings. Synod language workshops proposed 316 amendments for the first part alone.

The language workshops also tackled sexual abuse, as one of the Pope's principal advisers on the issue, Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta, emphasized. The same issue is expected to feature prominently in the final report.

"Most victims are young people and we need to speak of their wounds, which have been very often caused by those who were meant to care for them," he lamented.

Loss of credibility
Many bishops are conscious of the loss of credibility the abuse crisis has caused for the Church. As a result, they are keen to focus on the problems young people face.

"The issue is serious and important. However, in my country, the primary issue facing young people is war," said Cardinal Dieudonné Nzapalainga of Bangui in Central Africa.

Those who are forced to flee their countries "cannot be rejected like animals," he said.

Several language workshops discussed the migration issue. Africans in French-speaking groups warned against the loss this represents for their countries.

Role of women
"During the pre-synod there was an equal number of men and women, and it seemed natural to young people who have grown up in a mixed environment," said Sister Nathalie Becquart, who was formerly responsible for young people on behalf of the Bishops Conference of France.

"However, many young women have found it is still difficult to have an equal role both in society and in the Church," she said.

"It is interesting to see that young women are actively involved in our working groups," said Cardinal Gérald Lacroix of Quebec, Canada. "They play a genuine role and exercise a certain level of influence."

Cardinal Oswald Gracias of Mumbai, India, emphasized how Indian bishops are working on the gender equality issue.

"However, we need to find other ways of involving them at higher levels," he admitted.
After its first week, the synod has already opened many doors. But the final direction it will take remains to be seen.

Thu, 10/11/2018 - 11:56
Comment through the site Comment through facebook

Comments

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.