COMMENTS

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  • Philip Pocock 1 week

    Each of us in union with Church can be the instrument of the Holy Spirit and this what the plenary council is meant to be – not just babelling of ego centric fantasies.

    My views expressed many years ago may be of help and can be found by googling ‘pocock religion and truth’.

    Best of luck snd God bless

  • Therese Ventura 1 week

    Come Divine Will bless Australia xox Thanks Jesus

  • Peter Donnan 6 days

    Archbishop Christopher writes cogently: “The fundamental task here is, as Pope Francis phrases it, is “to do what is most pleasing to the Lord” (Christus Vivit 294)” and Pope Francis has indeed indicated some reform initiatives for the Church and one of these, according to a recent edition of ‘The Tablet’  is “de-emphasising the importance of doctrine”.

    Opposed to this focus, the same writer continues, conservative critics of the Pope from inside the Church, especially in the US  “take refuge in ethics in order to avoid the far more demanding business of encountering Christ. Hence, I suggest, their furious criticism of Francis for de-emphasising the importance of doctrine. Their devotion to individualism, unrestricted capitalism, and diminishment of government services, especially to the poor and marginalized, runs counter to the central tenets of Catholic social teaching.”

    So there are broad lines of conflict around different values in the broader church: those who prioritise doctrine and dogma, immutable canon law, the hierarchical, institutional church, contrasted with those who seek reform of Church governance, more transparency and accountability, a more pronounced role for women and other reform agendas.

    The idea of listening and discerning together is particularly worthwhile but it implies some preparedness to ameliorate one’s position. Even at the First Council of Jerusalem, Peter and Paul had different views and to some extent conflict is inevitable but the facts are, at the Plenary Council, recommendations and resolutions will be principally determined by those who possess voting rights and this rests principally with the deliberative vote of the bishops.  So while we should all cultivate a spirit of discernment it will be the bishops who will be fundamentally discerning ‘the deliberations of the diverse faithful regardless of their place in the hierarchy’ Frank Brennan suggests. There will also be some bishops who will dismiss certain views because they are fashionable, or misguided or not what they believe God wants of the Church here and now. Archbishop Fisher, for instance, has concerns: “What [Synodal Fathers are] wary of, I think, is the way synods might be manipulated today, swept up by the fashions of the age.” 

    A successful Plenary Council will promote a great sense of unity about the way forward for the Church in Australia.