What does the synod document say about women’s ordination, LGBTQ issues, and liturgy? – Catholic Telegraph

“Southern Africa is also affected by international trends of secularization, individualization and relativism. Issues such as Church teaching on abortion, contraception, female ordination, married clergy, celibacy, divorce and remarriage, Holy Communion, homosexuality, LGBTQIA+ have been raised in both rural and urban dioceses. There were of course differing views on this and it is not possible to give a definitive Community position on any of these issues.

Polygamous marriages are mentioned twice in the document. Paragraph 94 said: “many summaries also give voice to the pain of not being able to access the sacraments experienced by remarried divorcees and those who have contracted polygamous marriages”.


91. “Many reports strongly encourage the implementation of a synodal style of liturgical celebration that allows the active participation of all the faithful in welcoming all differences, valuing all ministries and recognizing all charisms. The synodal listening to the Churches registers many questions to be addressed in this direction: from rethinking a liturgy that is too focused on the celebrant, to the modalities of active participation of the laity, to the access of women to ministerial roles.

The document cites the US report, which describes the division regarding the traditional Latin Mass: “The most common problem concerning the liturgy is the celebration of the pre-conciliar mass. Limited access to the 1962 missal was lamented; many felt that differences over how to celebrate the liturgy “sometimes rise to the level of animosity. People on either side of the issue said they felt judged by those who differed from them.

93. “The reports do not fail to point out the main defects of the current celebratory praxis, which obscure its synodal effectiveness. In particular, are underlined: the principal liturgical role of the priest and the risk of passivity of the extended liturgical community; bad preaching, including the distance between the content of the sermon, the beauty of faith and the practicality of life; and the separation between the liturgical life of the assembly and the family network of the community. The quality of the homilies is almost unanimously pointed out as a problem.

38. “The desire for a home also characterizes those who, following the liturgical developments of the Second Vatican Council, do not feel at ease.

Synodal governance

71.”The synodal journey has brought out a certain number of tensions… We must not be afraid of them, but articulate them in a process of constant community discernment, in order to capture them as a source of energy without them becoming destructive: this does not is that it is thus possible to continue to walk together, rather than each going his own way. This is why the Church also needs to give a form and a synodal way of proceeding to its own institutions and structures, especially in matters of governance. Canon law will have to accompany this process of structural renewal by creating the necessary changes to the provisions currently in place.

In particular, the document recommends: “We should then add the economic, diocesan and parish councils, also taking note of the episcopal and presbyteral councils around the bishop. Many reports show the need for these bodies to be not only consultative, but places where decisions are made on the basis of community discernment processes rather than the majority principle used in democratic regimes.

82. “The overwhelming majority of reports indicate the need to provide formation for synodality. Structures alone are not enough: there is a need for ongoing formation to support a generalized synodal culture”.

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