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Opinion: You’re not listening!

Instead of the go out that’s packed into every word of the Gospel, every breath of even just this Sunday’s readings, we end up with: talk and fight about territory, role, organization, and process.

(Image: Pixabay)

The greatest irony about this irony-stuffed Synod on Synodality is fundamental and glaring. Once you see it, you can’t unsee it.

It’s this: Anxiously desiring to show that it’s a listening Church, institutional church leaders perfectly demonstrate that they aren’t listening.

In short: Take a look at the world around you. If your first response to the seeking, pain, suffering and questions that’s glaring evident at every level of society, in almost every home and even every heart is: let’s have a meeting on Church process and structure….you’re not listening.

Villanova’s Massimo Faggioli has a piece in Commonweal bewailing the lack of planned and actual involvement by universities in the synodal process. He asks: “If Synodality Can’t Get Young People Interested in the Church, Then What Can?”

I couldn’t make my point more clearly.

Yes, young adults who have seen their lives and plans totally upended over the past two years, who have been ill themselves, have had family members sick and perhaps die, who have been buffeted this way and that by authorities claiming to have their best interest at heart, whose parish churches have shut them out in times of greatest need, who face economic and professional futures that seem to grow more uncertain every day, who are immersed in a cylcone of fierce, competing forces seeking to commodify every corner of their existence for profit…

…of course they’re going to leap into church meetings about church process as an answer!

So…why aren’t they?

Such a mystery!

Here are today’s Mass readings.

Jeremiah receives his call. Paul calls us to the heart of the Gospel. Jesus announces that in his presence, God is at work.

There are a lot of ways we can say that the Second Vatican Council “failed,” but it’s always seemed to me that the greatest failure was that, unintentionally, the move to reform, which was offered as a way of equipping the Church to go into the world with more power and credibility, ended up severely handicapping that effort as “reform” became, unsurprisingly, decades of internal, inward-looking conversations and infighting.

Instead of the go out that’s packed into every word of the Gospel, every breath of even just this Sunday’s readings, we end up with: talk and fight about territory, role, organization, and process.

And so, here we go again. Not that the Church isn’t always in need of reform. Always. And those reforms can be necessary, indeed, to enable evangelization and service to a broken world to flourish.

But is this the case, right now, with this particular synod, with its particular focus? In this moment?

We’ve had a global crisis which has impacted the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health of billions.

Countless human beings are living in fear of illness and death, perhaps never having ever seriously confronted these realities before.

Human beings have lost income, jobs, and businesses.

Great numbers of human beings struggle with questions and tensions related to the role of government and business entities in their lives.

Globally, human beings and societies are wrestling with questions of the questions of balancing autonomy, social responsibility, and risk.

Human beings are flooded with information and assertions and communications, at sea regarding whose voice to trust.

Responses to this crisis have left human beings vulnerable, lonely, abandoned, anxious, fearful, and broken. And, let’s not forget angry.

If your answer to all of that bruised and beaten crisis-soaked world is to spend lots of time and money telling the members of Christ’s body – his hands, feet and voice on earth – that the most important thing they can do right now in this moment is to just keep talking endlessly amongst themselves about themselves….

….you’re not listening.

(Editor’s note: This post originally appeared on the “Charlotte was both” blog and is reposted here in slightly different form with kind permission of the author.)


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About Amy Welborn 25 Articles
Amy Welborn is a writer currently living in Birmingham, Alabama. She is the author of over twenty books on spirituality, saints and history., including the recently released Loyola Kids Book of Catholic Signs and Symbols: An Illustrated Guide to Their History and Meaning. Her website is www.amywelborn.com.

57 Comments

  1. This article hit the bullseye. I also might add that when the USCCB solicits inputs, and then shuts down the means of offering input because they don’t like the responses, that’s truly not listening.

  2. Or, is it that Amy Welborn misses the point?

    Instead of ignoring the decimation related to COVID, might it be that some operatives of synodality are using the crisis as a pretense for deconstructing the Church? Never let a good crisis go to waste (Saul Alinsky)? More on this, below.

    FIRST, Faggioli also misses an important point, in my opinion. Academia has had over half a century to mediate between an evangelizing Church and the intricacies and tripwires of the secular world, jumpstarted by the Second Vatican Council. Instead, the Land o’ Lakes Declaration of 1968, and now a widespread fascination with intersectionality and fragmented overspecialization down academic back allies. I generalize, but I’m just sayin’…

    SECOND, now, as for the possible “synodal” deconstruction of the Church, in a recent interview, the relator general of the Synod on Synodality, Cardinal Hollerich, is either (a) restraining expectation that the German “synod on synodality” might be more or less in charge, OR (b) he is soliciting pandemic support so as to make it so.

    Readeth between the lines…Hollerich was asked whether he could envisage the introduction of women deacons,

    “I would have nothing against it. But reforms need a stable foundation. If the pope were now simply to allow viri probati [the priestly ordination of mature, married men] and deaconesses, the danger of schism would be great.” https://www.catholicworldreport.com/2022/01/27/cardinal-in-key-synod-on-synodality-post-reforms-need-a-stable-foundation/

    So, what about such “reforms” and their “stable foundation”? Are they (a) the living Tradition as reaffirmed by Pope St. John Paul II in Ordinatio Sacerdotalis, 1994, or (b) the slippery slope of synodality as “synthesized” by himself and others?

    “Wherefore, in order that all doubt may be removed regarding a matter of great importance, a matter which pertains to the Church’s divine constitution itself, in virtue of my ministry of confirming the brethren (cf. Lk 22:32) I declare that the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the Church’s faithful” () https://www.vatican.va/content/john-paul-ii/en/apost_letters/1994/documents/hf_jp-ii_apl_19940522_ordinatio-sacerdotalis.html

    Of the synods, will there be any functionally literate adults in the room? And, how many bishops of the 2,248 dioceses in the world will rise above functioning only or “primarily as facilitators” (Vanedecum)?

    • Peter,
      I get what you’re saying. In addition to not listening, Amy’s point could have been sharper. Not only does the Vatican (perhaps forgivably? “NOT SEE” the crises in the world), they DO SEE and USE, with full knowledge, consent, and thus MALICE, the crises and effects. They do so in order to DECONSTRUCT the Church so that modernity will be one in all.

  3. Well written..I can only hope (falsely perhaps) that the Bishops worldwide would take heed and stop giving Ceasar that which belongs to God.

    That would be the only thing I would want them to listen to.

    • “Reform became, unsurprisingly, decades of internal, inward-looking conversations and infighting” (Amy Welborn). Her correct contention is Synodality is more of the same. Deaf and blind hierarchical acquiescence to the lockdown is among our greater sins.
      We’ve lost our identity in true Erik Erikson fashion. We’re being transformed by this pontificate into a Church in search of meaning . As if the Eternal Word was not revealed. Wizened masters of puppetry on strings they’re listening to a lesser voice. Children of an anthropomorphic god.

  4. Bravo, Amy! You’ve discerned the truth about the Vatican’s spasmodic synodalism — that it is, truly and incredibly, exactly what it seems:

    Risible, self-congratulatory rhetoric, accompanied by fake anguish over the suffering of others who aren’t as intelligent, perceptive or sensitive as the participants decidedly are.

    Henceforth, ‘synodality’ — if I ever hear the word again, which is doubtful — will always mean pretentious, self-serving blather.

  5. Nothing wrong with talking. In fact, it is good when the eventual aim is to seek the guidance of the Holy Sprit of God, the one who enlightens and empowers the Church. Millions of us are praying for the Church to truly benefit from this spiritual exercise. Yes, there are detractors and those who wish that it will fail, but the Holy Spirit will prevail.

    • There is a great deal wrong with “talking” when you conceive of it with an atheistic premise that truth, rather than a reflection of the unchanging mind of God, is a dialectical process among people who abuse God by predicating their “talk” with the idea that they can find “new ways” for humanity to create moral order that God, if God exists, somehow forgot to endow upon humanity up until now.

    • Yessiree, the synods and the Holy Spirit! Problem is, while all synods are equal, it seems that some are more equal than others.

      Take, for example, the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops in 1985, whose purpose was to set the Second Vatican Council back on an even keel consistent with the actual voted Documents. Said the synod: “We cannot replace a false unilateral vision of the Church as purely hierarchical with a new sociological conception which is also unilateral” (n. 3).

      But, today, we hear that the Church, as a “pyramid,” must now become an “inverted pyramid.” This through synodality apparently defined in this way and reduced to the Council’s “universal call to holiness.”

      This reader, for one, would be more confident in the synodal outcome if Cardinal Kasper expressed more than only “concern” over the “synodal wayward” directions in Germany—after himself having kicked the snowball down the slope in his own long-nurtured, two-hour, and wayward introduction to the Synod on the Family back in 2015.

      Real “concern” and restitution would be expressed as a public retraction. Instead, the beat(ing) goes on. And although all the chips now are on the table—it has come to this—the anxiety of many is that too many of the individual bishops will consent to being reduced to ornaments on Kasper’s key chain…as “facilitators” more than successors of the apostles.

      Yes, Mal, let all of us pray that “the Church to truly benefit from this exercise”—with the accent on “truly.”

    • St Nicholas of Myra help us. I don’t think Amy Wellborn missed the point…but see that there is more to it than what she was willing to mention. Peter filled in and completed those thoughts in a way.
      No busy thinking people wants to go to a cut and dried meeting. Or answer those very lame insulting questions.
      Leadership! Pray God will raise up holy intelligent Catholic leadership.

  6. If the people who come to this site and communicate with the ideas promoted here do nothing but ridicule and protest this Synod will they serve well those values they think ought to be a part of the Church’s presence in the world?

    One might say, “We can only tear down as those who stand apart from what is an unmitigated disaster because the whole structure of this thing is gamed to a preordained end and we have no real voice in the process.”

    But is that really so? Or is it better to engage the process and see if through this Synod the Church might actually be enabled by the Holy Spirit to forge a deeper synthesis that helps, both to address the new damages wrought by the pandemic and also to resolve or mollify somewhat this horrible left/right polarization which can sometimes tempt some to think it laughable that the claim that there is One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church is actually true?

    I say ‘all hands on deck’ and lets see if we can’t help the captain of the barque of Peter steer this thing through Mary and the Eucharist.

    Thank you for your consideration.

  7. A couple of decades ago, when corporate benchmarking was in vogue, I was assigned to a team to benchmark documentation practices in high tech companies. It was one of the best holidays I ever had. All the other team members were much more senior than me, so we stayed at the best hotels and ate at the nicest restaurants and took little side jaunts to visit touristy places. Between all the tourism and fancy meals, we gathered quite a lot of useful information on documentation practices in other companies.

    As the most junior member of the team, I was tasked with writing the final report. I summarized all the things that other companies were doing better than us and sent it to the rest of the team for approval. An edict came back from the most senior member of the team (a VP) telling me to tear it up. Corporate did not send us on a benchmarking exercise to learn that we could do better. It sent us to confirm that we were doing just fine already. (This is literally what he said.)

    I rewrote the report and thanked the corporation (privately) for a great holiday.

    They are not listening.

    • Exactly right, Mr. Baker.

      Under Bergoglio, the Vatican has devolved into an agendized, corporate-speaking leftist think tank.

      Like the organization you described, the bureaucrats in the Vatican aren’t really interested in hearing anything except how much more wonderful they are than the tiresome, ignorant, intolerant hoi polloi they have the misfortune to oversee.

    • Pope Francis was determined right from the beginning to do his best to bring the Church in line with our Lord’s teachings. Most of the people who oppose him are western priests and doctrine-loving ritual-practicing lay Catholics. This is how it was in our Lord’s time as well.
      I trust Pope Francis and pray that his efforts will help get the structural balance right. He believes that clericalism is a serious problem.

      • There was no such thing as doctrine at Our Lord’s time. Thankfully the Church doctrines that followed, based on the very words of Our Lord, is loved by His followers and rejected by personalities like Francis, and those who are willfully blind to the damage he is doing to misalign the Church from Our Lord’s teachings, a pope who disparages truthful doctrines that codify such beautiful precepts as those endowed in the Sermon on the Mount as so many “museum pieces” to be ignored because they cause discomfort to the world’s religion haters.

          • Many times, did you? The word doctrine is a Christian word, not an ancient Jewish word. Mal was invoking the conventional silliness that conflates the inappropriate authority paid to ancient ritualistic Jewish laws that potentially damaged essential human needs, which are properly recognized by and embedded in moral law. Those who desire to obscure moral obligation in today’s real world are fond of creating the popular confusion that Our Lord condemned “The Law”, as if this means all laws, without distinguishing that He did no such thing. He condemned prioritizing ritual over immediate moral obligation. Such was the meaning of The Good Samaritan. Ritual has its time and place, but moral obligations never take a time out. It is dishonest and a blasphemous abuse of Our Lord to pretend otherwise, even if a pope were to do it.

      • You speak approvingly of Our Lord’s “teachings,” and then disparage “doctrine-loving…” Catholics, as though the word “doctrine” were not synonymous with the word “teaching.” But a “doctrine” is a “teaching.” You cannot love “teaching” without loving “doctrine” because the two are the same.

      • Curious, those opposing Francis’ efforts to bring the Church “in line” are “doctrine-loving ritual-practicing lay Catholics.”

        Curious that St. Thomas Aquinas defines sacred doctrine as a body of truths imparted on God’s own authority, and hence established with absolute certitude.

        Curious that ritual is defined as a “series of actions or type of behavior regularly and invariably followed by someone.” Ritual is also defined as “a religious or solemn ceremony consisting of a series of actions performed according to a prescribed order.”

        Rituals characterize the religious practices of all major religions. series of actions or type of behavior regularly and invariably followed by someone. You yourself probably practice rituals while brushing your teeth, getting ready for work in the morning, doing dishes, or performing your weekly schedule. Little children find calm and peace in rituals at bedtime, at school, and during play.

        So? Yes. Those who performs cyclic, repeated series of actions for the sake of consistency and efficiency are performers of ritual.

        Most do not oppose the person of Francis per se while many do oppose his actions signifying neglect, negation, absurd and ambiguous contradiction, his confusing deconstruction of Christian sacred doctrine and those who love Christ through sacred rituals Christ and His Church established, commanded, and practiced for millennia.

        He took, He blessed, He broke, and He gave bread to His disciples. He commanded them to do so in His memory. HE gave that ritual and that sacred doctrine to the Church to guard, protect, and practice. Yet Francis persists in hate-speech against faithful Catholics who love doctrine and ritual. That speaks to a major FAULT ‘LINE’ in his thinking. That line we will NOT CROSS.

        • If you pray the Our Father, your praying doctrine. It’s loaded with it. Everything Our Lord said and did reflect or taught doctrine. That God is Father, IS Doctrine that Our Lord taught. What a red herring it is to say that Our Lord didn’t teach doctrine. What a strawman argument to act like doctrine and our Faith are opposed to each other, or what Our Lord taught is not doctrine.

          • Read the post again. I did not say that doctrine and faith are opposed to each other. Some Jewish leaders knew and “observed” their laws/ commandments and religiously performed their rituals but – yes but – they hated Jesus. One can, out of a sense of duty, observe the commandments, dogmas or whatever you would call it but could still be lacking in a loving connection with God or his creation.

  8. I am trying to picture in my mind Saints Peter and Paul going to Rome and soliciting the opinion of the residents there how they should teach and spread the gospel.
    I thought we are an apostolic Church, not a synodal Church. The fact is, when we say the Church teaches this or that, what is really the case is that the Church has an official position on this or that, but it is not taught.

    • Or, what about St. Paul in Athens at the Areopagus…

      …when he discoursed on “the Unknown God”: “Now what you are worshiping in ignorance I intend to make known to you” (Acts 17:23)? Yes, Paul did cite the pagan poets (“In him we live and move and have our being”), but he did this in order to then elevate inquirers into the revealed Faith; NOT in order to water down or deconstruct the Faith.

      Then, when the crowd split—some wanting to hear more, while others sneered—Paul did NOT say, “well, let’s congregate into focus groups to split the difference! That is, in the end, to write a “synthesis” paper—discerning the “unanimity” of sensus fidelium—by inclusively cobbling together all of today’s blatant contradictions. (But, somewhere in the Vademecum, we do detect a weak phrase warning against “passing opinions.”)

      Under the “endless journey” (a too-vagrant version of synodality?), can we at least agree that Solomon was NOT a narrow-minded, rigid bigot by refusing to split the baby fifty-fifty? Solzhenitsyn, survivor of years in the Gulag, spoke to this: “We have lost the CLARITY OF SPIRIT which was ours when the concepts of Good and Evil had yet to become a subject of ridicule, shoved aside by the principle of fifty-fifty.”

  9. The only direction this Church and Her members need is in the first of the miracles Jesus performed, the wedding feast at Cana. Mary says to the servants, “Do what he tells you.” Simple. Not easy. The Blessed Mother went right to the heart of the need without discussion or some synod of synodality.

    • Thanks for easing my blood pressure with the happy image. I never liked the slogan popular about 20 years ago of What would Jesus do because it is the improper question which should be what would Jesus have me do? But it is quite fitting to now and then ask what would Our Holy Mother do? No confusion or synods for her.

  10. Always the cliche/buzzword reform, or reform of the reform. Almost always regarding structures, organizations, duties, prioritizing spending, and, oh yes, assorted forms such as rights. As if in adhering to forms, the Church is validated.

    Almost never does reform mean a metanoia, a true re-form of a caterpillar becoming a glorious, no longer earth bound butterfly lost in love for its creator and linked immortally to that creator through eternal bonds of love, by letting go the heavy weight of sin in order to soar in that love.

    Which of these folk touting reform would you take for a spiritual guide to lead you to sainthood and salvation? Which of them has that answer you so desperately seek?

    Or, is it that you doubt that such even exists, and so wrap yourself in reform or reform of the reform, to hide from the impending oblivion?

  11. More “Mumbo-Jumbo” from USCCB.Ever since 2008 and the screaming mobs yelling that Obama
    was “The One We Were Waiting For” America has never been the same.As Mr T said:”I Pity the Fool”.

  12. Unlike the buoyant young people from whom I’ve received encouragement every year joining them at the March for Life, the more cynical have no basis for responding to a distorted Gospel message. Thanks to so many bankrupt theologians and cowardly prelates that refuse to take them to task, a false Gospel has been watered down to what Richard Niebuhr famously said about liberal Protestantism: “A God without wrath brought men without sin into a Kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a Cross.”
    Bored unholy men are always looking to be revolutionaries, an evil thing in itself. A good reform would be to renounce the idea of “reform” and stick to proclaiming the good news that God’s truth never changes….no matter how offensive this truth about truth might be to Francis.

  13. I do think Amy goes off track when explaining the motivations of young adults not participating in Church processes. She builds up an emotional, reactionary, basis for the present cause of suffering and non-participation for this demographic and conveniently slips in one of the causes to be the abandonment of young adults by parishes. I think she might consider that many young adults once daydreamed their way through religious education, just as, in particular, their younger counterparts argue regularly in opposition of Church teaching in the Catholic high school nearby me against a very thought-provoking, patient, well-versed theology teacher whom I know is amply qualified to converse with younger people. Long before COVID, cohorts of teenagers and young adults opted for the world’s worldview and so didn’t even notice the closing of parishes; not until perhaps they encountered an answering machine when they wanted a certificate to be a godparent for which they wholly did not qualify (actually it was mostly Mom or Dad who telephoned for them). We can all agree that the synod is not about listening to anyone who does not speak its progressive language. But let’s stop treating age-of-reason young adults, who are allegedly so eager to learn and achieve so much, as if they are so eager to learn and achieve so much for the Church.

  14. I just taught a class this morning on “Listening.” Had to go over selection and attention bias, concepts I normalize have only so much patience for… But the thing is, in cases like this they very much apply. Our leaders cannot listen well because the do not live in the same culture or belief system.

  15. I think Amy Welborn is right on target, and msny comments, particularly Mark Baker’s, are right on the money.

    “The-Synod-for-the-Professional-Church-Class” is a “self-licking ice cream cone.” They are recording their own insular and “de-Gospelled” voices and will be playing it back to themselves, and announcing thst they heard themselves talking to themselves.

    Zombie-Church-Conference-Babble, devoid of the Living Word of The Son of The Father of Lights.

  16. In other words, “Children of All Ages” yearn for “Light and Life.”

    The Synod-for-the-Sex-Revolution-Cult offers a committee memo…

  17. “Synod on Synodality” is blather to my ears: “Let’s all council, shepherds and sheep, about the process of governing the Church, using words unfamiliar to the latter.” It’s curious that the other two charisms (governing, the third)–teaching and sanctifying–given by Christ to St Peter and The Eleven and their successors as they preach the Gospel to the whole world are not getting as much attention. I see too much emphasis on the organizing of worshipers of deity, little of the way of discipleship in Christ–suffering, sacrifice, sanctification. In our age of hyper-communication “Synodality” looks more like community organizing to me.

  18. “The greatest irony about this irony-stuffed Synod on Synodality is fundamental and glaring. Once you see it, you can’t unsee it.” Amy Welborn.

    And what do I see? Some Catholics, especially in the West, do not want to listen to the Vicar of Christ, the “Rock” specifically put in place by Jesus to make moral decisions that would, without a doubt, be accepted in heaven. Many of these “wise and Holy Spirit-inspired people” believe that it is their judgement that is more important. The Church must exist in the way they assume it should.
    The problem is that this will not be seen because we do not look inwards.

    • Apparently you believe in the classic Jesuit (contra the original Ignatian context) teaching on holy obedience as ready submission of the will AND automatic, unquestioning submission of the intellect. That’s every bit as irrational (and anti-Gospel) as Bergoglio’s divorce of pastoral care from doctrine. You’re certainly spouting ultra-Montanism; hopefully, it’s only because you’re naive and not because of some heretical imperative.

      • “Bergoglio’s divorce of pastoral care from doctrine” ??

        Pope Francis, the faithful Apostle of Jesus, does not divorce one from another. Neither do I. For a Catholic they need to go together “faith that worketh by charity” (Gal 5:6). It was the doctrine-abiding religious people who were partly responsible for our Lord’s crucifixion.

        • If you teach anything, you teach doctrine. Doctrine is just a word. So, we have doctrine in many things. Science has certain doctrines. Where doctrine got a bad name, I have no idea. These word games being played have ulterior motives behind them. They Crucified Our Lord because they disagreed with his doctrine, that he was the Son of God. To act as if Our Lord was doctrine free is lunacy. He taught things that he was willing to go to his death over. He said we should be willing to die for what he taught.

          • Doctrine does not have a bad name. People who pay lip service to it or abuse it are to blame for their bad behavior. What would you say about priests who preached, taught and defended doctrine in public but abused vulnerable people? Our faith is more than doctrine. Somebody could be absolutely ignorant about the catechism but could love Jesus.
            Do you know that Jesus did not establish a religion. In fact, he and his earthly parents were Jews – doctrine-laden religion that helped keep followers on the right path but there was no redemption in it. Redemption comes from our union with Jesus, the only one who reconciled the human soul with God. This is the Church that Jesus founded. All our sacramental blessings spring from this Church. This is the Church we, as disciples of Jesus, are meant to be faithfully a part of. Not to pull it asunder to suit our personal preferences.

  19. I think the complaints about the synod are overblown. I’ve seen a lot of fretting, name-calling, and outright violence committed in opposition to the past few synods. The 1978-2013 synods might have been more of a waste of time if one wasn’t in the Top Two. Prepared questions, guaranteed answers, and a few weeks in sunny Rome for consultors.

    By all means, let Catholics be people of action. Skip the synod as you wish. Let the fruits of the faithful be seen in their mission in the world, and perhaps not so much on keystrokes on the internet.

  20. They seem to already be aware that young people can be found in significant numbers where ever the TLM is said. Yet, no mention of this?

  21. “all the Pope’s men want is to make sodomy OK”

    ” … comments containing … personal attacks-—will not be published.”

    Or, perhaps they will be.

    So, which pope’s men? The one who ordained and promoted bishops like O’Brien or courted celebrities like Maciel.

  22. The Pontiff is in conference listening to the Cardinal Reinhard Marx and possibly another Marx, all with his back to the faithful. While he is attentively listening to the Marx’s of this world, the faithful can see the nod of the Pontiff’s head.
    Observing this gathering the faithful cannot figure out just how the Pontiff can so generously nod his head to the immoral and sacrilegious avenue the group is entering.

  23. Well at least we can all rest secure in the knowledge that this guy Hollerich, whom PF appointed to lead the synod as relator general, has just publicly announced his view that the Church’s teachings on homosexuality are wrong and must be changed. Point being, anyone who thinks this is just a “meeting about meetings” is incredibly naive.

  24. It isn’t accidental that Jesus called fishermen. Fishermen don’t sit at home waiting: they go where the fish are. They choose various sorts of bait based on the nature of the fish. Different bait for different fish. Once they catch the fish, they have an appropriate place to put them. Fishers of men catch the quarry alive. They don’t put them on ice.

  25. Another form of not listening:

    A battered woman and her two children show up at the church door begging for help. The response to her need is “Let me explain the intricacies of transubstantiation”. Or, “Let me list the rules for receiving Holy Communion by pro abortion politicians”.

  26. The life of St. Rita of Cascia bears witness to the rule of faith and testifies that faith can not be reduced without removing the witness.

    That is at the personal level. But there is also an ecclesial dimension that must draw from her example. Just as a cleric can commit a secular crime and it’s still a crime, so too, a cleric can utter false teaching and it’s still false teaching.

    It isn’t the case that something is false teaching only when the cleric is guilty of a related secular crime. A cleric who utters false teaching is guilty of uttering false teaching and this stands against him as of its own account.

    The attempt to make false teaching into something alright, is not new to the Church; and just as she has always triumphed over it in the past, she will, without fail, continue to be victorious against such things, regardless of who can recognize it.

    There is a deeper aspect to this. The Lord told Pilate that the one who handed Him over bears the greater guilt. So you ones who are in charge, you had better be very careful what it is you pronounce on and the confidence it gives you to represent it.

    https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/head-of-european-bishops-commission-calls-for-a-change-in-church-teaching-on-homosexuality/

6 Trackbacks / Pingbacks

  1. Opinion: You’re not listening! – Via Nova Media
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  5. For All of Us Who Feel Ignored by the “Listening Church” – Via Nova Media
  6. For All of Us Who Feel Ignored by the “Listening Church” – The Old Roman

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