The World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia in 2015 will serve as a forum for debating issues on the agenda for the world Synod of Bishops the following month.
Synod on the Family
The family under discussion when the extraordinary Synod of Bishops convenes at the Vatican Oct. 5 will bear little resemblance to the family of 50 or even 20 years ago.
Faith and Justice: The first synod I covered as a journalist was the 1980 Synod of Bishops on the family, which proved to be a month of fun and frustration.
In a long and complex article in the Sept. 15 issue of America magazine, Cardinal Walter Kasper discusses how mercy is understood in the Gospel and in the teaching of Pope Francis. He applies this to the possibility of permitting those in second marriages to be absolved and returned to the church in good standing. This issue is now under discussion in preparation for the upcoming synod, Kasper says, and it is clear he will be one of those pushing enthusiastically for change in the near future.
NCR Today: The appointment of 25 curial officials to the synod is a sign that Pope Francis still doesn't understand what real reform of the Curia requires.
Michael Sean Winters last week wrote in-depth and scholarly pieces on the October Synod of Bishops on the family. Anybody interested in learning everything that can be known in preparation for the synod needs to read these blog posts.
Among the nonvoting members of 38 observers and 16 experts appointed by the pope, the majority are laymen and laywomen, including 14 married couples.
Sept. 28 has been dedicated as a special day for prayer ahead of the Oct. 5-19 synod of bishops on the family
The Catholic church should make "unconventional couples" feel at home instead of making them targets of "de facto discrimination," the leader of the Italian Bishops Conference and an ally of Pope Francis said this week.
"Couples in irregular matrimonial situations are also Christians, but they are sometimes looked upon with prejudice," said Bishop Nunzio Galantino, an apparent reference to divorced and remarried Catholics.
We say: The bishops seem unaware of these threatening obstacles, many of them inherent in the very culture out of which the bishops work.