This week, the Standing Committee of the Irish Bishops’ Conference met in Columba Centre of Saint Patrick’s College, Maynooth, to discuss the forthcoming universal Synod on Synodality. This will take place in Rome from 4 – 29 October, on the theme: ‘For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation, Mission’.
Bishops reflected that, “The Synodal Process is about conversion, and we pray that all participants will be open in mind and heart to what the Holy Spirit wants of each individually, and collectively. In light of Pope Francis’ comment that ‘without prayer there will be no Synod’, we encourage people of faith to unceasingly pray to God over the coming weeks at daily and weekend Masses, at home, and in religious communities, to intercede for Pope Francis and for all members of the Synodal Assembly.”
Prayer texts have been made available to parishes as well as to the Association of Leaders of Missionaries and Religious of Ireland for the benefit of its members. Bishop Brendan Leahy of Limerick, and Bishop Alan McGuckian SJ of Raphoe, will represent the Irish Church at this global assembly.
The aim of the Synodal Process is to provide an opportunity for the entire People of God to discern together how to move forward towards being a more synodal Church in the long-term. It was initiated by Pope Francis who, in October 2021, convened the whole Church in Synod. Since that time there have been gatherings of the faithful at parish, national and continental levels.