The bishops in the Philippines admitted the flaws

Vow to continue the ‘synodal’ journey with vigor

Jul 15, 2022

The Catholic bishops of the Philippines meet for their bi-annual meeting in Tagaytay City from July 9 to 11. (Photo by Roy Lagarde)

By Ronald O. Reyes

The Catholic bishops of the Philippines have admitted flaws in their work of evangelization, saying the Church in the country is “still far from our dream of a Church of the poor.”

“We have found gaps and closed doors in our evangelistic work. We saw shadows, ”the statement issued by Church leaders, following the National Synodal Consultation held in Tagaytay City last week.

In 2021, Pope Francis formally opened a two-year process called “a synod on synodality,” officially known as Synod 2021-2023: For a Synodal Church.

The process involves expanding an established institution, called the “Synod of Bishops,” where Church leaders around the world consult with everyone before coming together for a discussion in 2023.

“In hope and faith in the mercy of the Lord, we dedicate ourselves to Synodality-watching, listening and loving as our means of continuity, so that we can grow into a humble, welcoming and inclusive Church in the Philippines,” the will be read by bishops in the Philippines. ‘statement entitled “How good and how pleasant it is when God’s people live together!” from Psalm 133: 1.

The bishops admitted that “they do not have all the answers to the many questions of our day” even though they recognize “the goodness and gift of our people and of those who are not of our faith.”

They promised to “open the doors for all of us to go out and re -mission” and “find those who are far away, different, excluded.”

In what they described as a “synodal journey,” the bishops said they would strive to “meet, listen and talk with our brothers and sisters of different denominations and faiths” and “explore possibilities for positive communication. in the fields of ecumenism, inter-religious dialogue, politics and social media. ”

They then called for unity, especially among those around, as they embarked on a “new mission.”

We hear Pope Francis constantly calling for a Church whose members strive to live in unity and oneness (communion), participate (participation) in the life of the Church, and never tire of finding the smallest, the lost. and the last (mission), ”said Church leaders.

“This is a call to a Synodal Church – a Church that travels together,” read the statement signed by Bishop Pablo Virgilio David of Kalookan, president of the conference.

The statement of Church leaders said they responded to the call of a “synodal Church” starting with dioceses, prelature and apostolic vicariates by listening to each other, from different sectors to barangay level, especially those on the periphery and those not included in our church communities. ”

During the nationwide consultations, the bishops said that “they heard loud voices calling to us, to our clergy, consecrated people and lay associates to listen to the call to conversion, that step out of our comfort zones, to be welcome, to be clear and responsible. , to be more compassionate. ”

The statement said it meant “opening a wide door of meeting, listening and conversation; the door of renewal of ourselves and of the clergy; the door to greater testimony of simplicity and humility; the doors of management, good governance and creative care; doors to the strengthening of faith building and the strengthening of the laity, and the strengthening of our communities; the door to the renewal of our structures and ministries, – leave the unhelpful and embrace those who make us a community; doors that lead to building bridges, closing gaps and promoting equality. ” –LiCAS News