ASIA/INDIA - New ecclesial pathways and the need to adopt creative pastoral approaches for a “synodal Church”

Friday, 5 August 2022 synodality   synod of bishops  

Bangalore (Agenzia Fides) - "The Gospel speaks to us of the dream of Jesus for his disciples, for us. This dream of Jesus for his disciples has got two facets: Communion and Mission. In order to journey with the Church in her mission, we need to foster communion within and without", said Cardinal-designate Filipe Neri Ferrão, archbishop of Goa and Daman and Patriarch of East Indies and President of the Conference of Latin Catholic Bishops in India, during the national synodal gathering of the Latin Church, held in recent days in Paalanaa Bhavana, in the Pastoral Center of the Archdiocese of Bangalore, in the presence of Bishops, priests, religious, nuns and lay people of the Church of the Latin rite in India.
During the meeting, a team comprising of 15 bishops, 12 priests, 10 religious, and 27 lay leaders will validate and finalize the synthesis prepared by the National Synod Desk in collaboration with the CCBI Commission for Theology and Doctrine. The report will be sent to the General Secretariat of the Synod, in the Vatican, as a contribution from the Indian Catholic community of the Latin rite.
Msgr. Ferrao recalled the example of three great leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King Jr, who dreamed and built a better tomorrow for their peoples.
With this spirit the Latin Church has elaborated the synthesis, which will effectively serve "as a road map for the Church in India in the next decade", he said.
The synodal journey, he said, "is an opportunity for the Latin Church in India to discern new ecclesial paths and adopt creative pastoral approaches that help be a genuinely authentic synodal Church".
The paths indicated are those of "greater communion, participation and ecclesial mission, to be lived for the baptized in the subcontinent", according to the three aspects indicated by the Synod 2021-2023, to promote a synodal Church in all its aspects.
Among the themes present in the Synthesis of the works, regard the excessive clericalism of the Indian Church, the discrimination experienced by women in society and in the Church, the commitment to the protection of minors in schools and other institutions, the condition of the Dalits and of migrants and the need for greater commitment in youth ministry.
The document drawn up invites us to become "Church in listening, Church at service, humble Church".
The synthesis prepared by the Latin Church made use of the contribution of 60 delegates who, representing various dioceses across the country, presented a report with suggestions for the drafting of the final report which, as reported to Fides by Fr. Stephen Alathara, deputy secretary general of the CCBI, will be sent to the Holy See in Rome (SD/PA) (Agenzia Fides, 5/8/2022)