The Catholic Church is a very messy place. It is full of flawed people (well over a billion). We all hope to become saints, but for now we are all sinners, every one of us.
That is why we need the Church.
Her mission is to spread the Good News, without distortion, in order to help as many people as possible get to Heaven.
The eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had ordered them.
When they saw him, they worshiped, but they doubted.
Then Jesus approached and said to them, “All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me.
Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.”
There is no other institution like the Catholic Church. Absolutely none. This is the institution Christ himself founded, the only one.
What is a synod?
Simply put, a synod is nothing more than a fancy word for an advisory committee. Nothing more. It includes only a small fraction of the Magisterium. At its conclusion, it will make recommendations to the Holy Father.
The current Synod on the Family
I have avoided writing about this, hoping and praying that numerous reports are over-reacting. You might find this hard to believe. It is certainly deeply disappointing, but please try to keep it in perspective..
This synod, very unfortunately, is a failure. If you have been following faithful Catholic media, you are already aware of the myriad of problems. These include:
- non-representative participation – the synod members (“synod fathers”) are not drawn from the vast majority (the good shepherds) who represent worldwide Catholicism of the ages, but instead skew heavily toward the modernist “progressive” end of the spectrum; some members have openly promoted heretical positions long before their invitation to the synod.
- non-transparency – information flow has been anything but open. Press credentials are given to new (even non-Catholic) media with apparent heterodox agendas while actually revoked from other long-standing faithful media (even clergy). Transcripts are not provided. Official translators, mostly from progressive ranks, give their own personal summaries which have been shown to exaggerate progressive views while omitting traditional, faithful ones which were (often strongly) expressed.
- “shadow synods” – groups pushing progressive agendas have been working in a political style, in private, strategizing how to steer the result.
- pre-determined results – credible reports of at least draft forms of the final synod recommendations are persistent, including prior to the synod starting.
- extraordinary synod experiences – the shennigans from the preparatory synod last Fall are legion and quite well documented. This has NOT resulted in effective reforms for the synod itself. If anything, circumstances are worse.
- synod rules – differ from previous synods and are a major facilitator of the problems.
- wide ranging issues – the purpose of this synod is to strengthen the family, yet non-related homosexual issues and women’s ordination to the diaconate have been permitted while faithful bishops have been shutdown when supporting the continuous teaching of the Church.
Response of the Faithful
Over 800,000 people, including many Bishops and Cardinals, have signed an extraordinary Filial Appeal to Pope Francis asking for clarification.
During the synod, a group of Cardinals (including Cardinal Dolan of New York City) have written to Pope Francis expressing their alarm.
Numerous books by groups of faithful Cardinals and Bishops have been authored in response to the false, dangerous proposals some have made in the last few years which are coming to a climax now.
Doctrine is inerrant and therefore can not be changed (ever), so accept that as a given.
The synod itself may or may not produce a public final report. If it does, expect it to be ambiguous and contradictory. The committee tasked with writing it is clearly stacked. Pope Francis might take no action. If he does, expect approval of “pastoral responses” to “certain needs” which he either specifies OR leaves up to national bishop conferences.
Either way, the net result of this in much of Europe (Germany for sure while Poland not at all) and certain non-European areas (including parts of the US), will be an increase in significant abuses. This is similar to the pattern that followed Vatican II. People will be led away from truth to their eternal detriment.
There is talk of this causing schism (that won’t happen, but true unity will suffer). Bishops are being urged to walk away from the synod should it be necessary for them to show their strongest disagreement with its often outrageous conduct and false conclusions.
YET, the Church will survive. We may see harmful turmoil, but in the end the Church will pull together, possibly smaller, but stronger than ever. Perhaps it will be under a different pope and not in our lifetimes. This remains the Church Christ founded, it can be wounded, but the gates of Hell can not prevail.
As a result of this, many [of] his disciples returned to their former way of life and no longer accompanied him.
Jesus then said to the Twelve, “Do you also want to leave?”
Simon Peter answered him, “Master, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and are convinced that you are the Holy One of God.”
Jesus answered them, “Did I not choose you twelve? Yet is not one of you a devil?”
He was referring to Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot; it was he who would betray him, one of the Twelve.
For now, pray. Pray for the faithful bishops who fight against this stacked deck. Pray for the heterodox bishops who seek compromise with the fallen world under a banner of false mercy. Pray for Pope Francis, that he strongly and clearly lead the Church in the truth of Christ.