Our Holy Father Pope Francis has invited the Catholic Church to embark on a journey together
A Synod is a journey of discernment, in which the people of God are called to pray and reflect upon the Holy Spirit’s will for the whole Church.
Through our listening and our sharing, we will seek to understand what the Holy Spirit’s will is.
It’s an invitation to everyone. And it’s not a one-day wonder
Through listening and understanding rooted in the Holy Spirit, the entire people of God is called to be part of it. Through this process — called a synodal path — the Church community deepens in understanding of Her mission and looks toward the future.
A Synod, which is the process by which the Church will begin this important work is not just a convening of Bishops reflecting on a particular topic and advising the Pope.
Pope Francis has dedicated the 2023 Ordinary Synod of Bishops to synodality.
Simply put, synodality is discerning how the Spirit is moving through and with the Body of Christ, so that we may continue to fulfill our mission to make disciples of Jesus in the world.
This is what it’s about:
This short video outlines the three themes of the Synod
During May 2022, in the Diocese of Cork and Ross, people are invited to be part of the synodal process in the following ways:
- Everyone is invited to complete the questionnaire on this website
(This is anonymous and takes from about 10 minutes - depending on how much you want to write)
- Afternoon synodal meetings with be held with representatives of randomly selected parishes
(Information about these meetings is sent to the selected parishes and the meetings will be on Sunday afternoons.)
- Smaller group meetings will be held with groups of young people, women’s groups, Traveller community, and more
The synodal meetings will be facilitated by Elizabeth Garry Brosnan with support from a task group in the diocese.
Responses from all three channels will be collated by Elizabeth Garry Brosnan with support from the task group and then submitted to Bishop Fintan who will send it to the Irish Church's working group on the Synod.
A summary document will be created from the responses from these participants. This document will be forwarded to a meeting of Irish people who will have the data from all dioceses of Ireland. From this, an Irish submission will be written which will become part of a Europe-wide synodal path. By 2023, all continents will have submitted their responses to the Synod in Rome.
Is there an Irish Synod as well?
Yes. Coincidentally — or providentially — the Irish Catholic Bishops had also called for a Synod of the Irish Catholic Church. And some dioceses in Ireland have independently already held their own diocesan synod earlier. The feedback from our synodal meetings in Cork and Ross will feed intot he iitial stages of the Irish process also.
Here Fr Eamonn Fitzgibbon outlines the process for the Irish Synodal Pathway: