Tag Archives: Synod of Bishops

3 US Synod Fathers speak on the New Evangelization

The beginning of the critically important meeting of church leaders, clergy and lay alike, on the New Evangelization, is fast approaching on October 7. Cardinal Wuerl and Dolan and Archbishop Kurtz offer a 3 minute insight into their work. CNS did a video clip on what they said.

Ecclesial Movements impact Synod of Bishops on Evangelization

By now you ought to see a significant theme in the work of Communio, both on this blog and as a way of being in the Church: it is as Dom Luigi Gioia, OSB Oliv., has said about this theological point, “To describe the whole Church, as well as each Christian community, as a communio before speaking of ‘body,’ or ‘society,’ or ‘institution,’ -terms which have of course their share of truth- is knowingly to make charity the essential element of a Christian community, the condition sine qua non of its existence, its raison d’être.” Charity has as its essential element of extroversion the living and sharing of the truth of the faith received by us from the Trinitarian life of God. Faith is a lens by which we live, it is not a pious statement of what we supposedly believe about God. The sharing of faith, this sharing of charity and faith in a communio, is the heart of evangelization.

 Categories being what they are, are helpful in seeing the division of labor and thinking. This is no less is the true for the Thirteenth Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, 7 to 28 October, discussing “The new evangelization for the transmission of the Christian faith.”
The leaders from the various ecclesial movements are worth noting because the vital presence they and the movements they represent have in the life of the Church:
  • Br. Enzo Bianchi, prior of the Monastero of Bose (Italy)
  • Maria Voce (Italy), president of the Focolari Movement
  • Marco Impagliazzo (Italy), president of the Sant’Egidio Community
  • Lydia Jimenez Gonzalez (Spain), director general of the “Cruzadas de Santa Maria” Secular Institute
  • Francisco Jose Gomez Arguello Wirtz (Spain), co-founder of the Neo-Catechumenal Way
  • Chiara Amirante, founder and president of the New Horizons Community (Italy)
  • Florence De Leyritz, member of the Alpha France Association (France)
  • Marc De Leyritz, president of the Alpha France Association (France)
  • *Father Julián Carrón, the President of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation might be counted here, too, but he actually is listed by the Holy See among the bishops.

America’s Voice in the World’s New Evangelization

The Holy See has appointed 45 persons as Experts and Observers for the forthcoming Thirteenth Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, 7 to 28 October on the theme: “The new evangelization for the transmission of the Christian faith.”

While they are not the full members of the Synod of Bishops (they’re not bishops) these people do have an essential role in that they will contribute to the conversation and will help to frame the outcome. Noteworthy are the number of women invited: 10 experts and 19 observers.

There will be seven US bishops and ten other Americans at the Synod.

The is the list of non-bishops from the Americas which ought to be noted (more noted here):

Sr. Sara Butler M.S.B.T., professor, St. Mary of the Lake University, Mundelein, and member of the International Theological Commission

Sr. Paula Jean Miller F.S.E., professor, Department of Theology of the University of St. Thomas, Houston

Sr. Mary Lou Wirtz F.C.J.M., president of the International Union of Superiors General

Marylee J. Meehan, president of the International Catholic Committee of Nurses and Medico-Social Assistants

Fr. Jeremy Driscoll O.S.B., professor, Theological Faculty of Rome’s St. Anselm Pontifical Athenaeum, and professor, Mount Angel Seminary, St. Benedict, OR

Edward Peters, professor, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit

Ralph Martin, director of graduate theological programs in the new evangelization at the Sacred Heart Seminary, Detroit

Carl Albert Anderson, supreme knight of the Knights of Columbus

Curtis A. Martin, founder and president of the Fellowship of Catholic University Students – Focus Missionaries

Peter Murphy, executive director of the Secretariat fo Evangelization and Catechesis, US Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Two new Doctors of the Church: The Lord’s effective witnesses in the world

Reminding us that the Holy Spirit “continues to inspire women and men who engage in the pursuit of truth” Pope Benedict announced that on October 7, at the beginning of the Ordinary Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, he would proclaim St. John of Avila and St. Hildegard of Bingen as Doctors of the Church. “These two great witnesses of the faith lived in very different historical periods and came from different cultural backgrounds,” he said. “But the sanctity of life and depth of teaching makes them perpetually present: the grace of the Holy Spirit, in fact, projected them into that experience of penetrating understanding of divine revelation and intelligent dialogue with the world that constitutes the horizon of permanent life and action of the Church.”

The Pope continued: “Especially in light of the project of the New Evangelization, to which the Assembly of the Synod of Bishops will be dedicated, and on the vigil of the Year of Faith, these two figures of saints and doctors are of considerable importance and relevance.”

Evangelization Today : Communion and Pastoral Collaboration between Africa and Europe

The Catholic buzz word is the “evangelization.” It’s running the risk of becoming an irrelevant concept if we don’t take the time to really understand the contours of sharing the faith given to us by the Holy Spirit and authentically lived in the communion of the Church. Some bishops from Africa and Europe had a symposium to explore the needs and desires in living Christianity as an event from the 13-17 February. It didn’t get much press in these parts because (A) it is perceived that neither Africa and Europe are so far away from North America that what the symposium had to do didn’t impact us and (B), well Africa and Europe have little to say to us. Wrong. We are a communion of peoples; live our faith in communion with other Christians around the world not in isolation from the another group of people. What the Church in Africa does should, in fact, shed light on our life of faith. We belong to Christ, therefore to the Church and therefore each other; no Christian is alone. 

Listen to what the Pope says here.

Fifty years after the opening of the Second Vatican Council and a few months away from the Synod on New Evangelization, we wanted to look into our hearts about this theme: Evangelization today: Communion and Pastoral Collaboration between Africa and Europe. The human person and God: the Church’s mission to proclaim God’s presence and love. In this Symposium we have found the joy of reunion, and we have assessed the progress made over these eight years. Indeed, the Beatitudes are our common treasure. More and more, they make us discover our complementary nature, but also our co-responsibility and interdependence in the lives of our local Churches. It’s a question of rising to the challenges of an increasingly new Evangelization in our two continents today “For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body ( …) and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.  Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many” (1 Corinthians 12 :13-14). We have rejoiced for the progress we have made in the last decades in the relations between our two continents – the Synods for Africa and for Europe, as well as our meetings, are a testimony to this very fact.

For the full report, see The Vatican Insider

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT, follows the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, and is an Oblate of Saint Benedict, works as a monastery farmer and a keeper of honey bees. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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