Faith and Justice: Now that the synod process has moved to the local level, will the bishops emulate Francis and encourage open discussion in their dioceses?
Simply Spirit: While the outcomes of part one of the synod on the family are disappointing, the synod itself modeled a healthy new process of wide-ranging discussion.
Analysis: The Vatican summit on the challenges of family life wrapped without reaching a consensus on hot-button topics. Where does that leave Francis' papacy and the church?
Faith and Justice: The synod process has been in place since Pope Paul VI's papacy, but the synod on the family has some aspects that are uniquely Pope Francis.
A Roman Observer: Pope Francis has succeeded in cracking open a frank and lively debate among bishops on issues many of them were told were not up for discussion.
"This morning in the free discussion, some of the synod fathers and participants said openly that they felt the spirit of Vatican II very much."
Analysis: Listening, respecting, welcoming, dialogue are words repeated throughout the Synod of Bishops' new document. Condemnation and marginalization are nowhere to be found.
During this morning's discussions, "there was no sense of doom or gloom or despair," but a desire to share ideas that are working to promote church teaching.
One theme said to be included in the synod: how the prelates use labels that "are not necessarily words that invite people to draw closer to the church."
"I wonder, though, if it is helpful to frame pastoral questions as totally distinct from doctrinal issues; to me, this downplays the significance of the challenges families face."