In a Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica on Sunday, Pope Francis opened a two week forum among Catholic leaders across the global to address social issues such as contraception, pre-martial sex, and divorce. The two-week global synod of nearly 200 Church leaders commence with the Pope campaigning against vast ideas and intellectual sparring.
Pope Francis was keen to advise the bishops and cardinals that the Catholic Church should be nurtured with “freedom, creativity and hard work.” The global synod was the first of its kind in nearly 30 years.
“Synod gatherings are not meant to discuss beautiful and clever ideas, or to see who is more intelligent,” Pope Francis said. The Pope insisted on the importance of working “generously with authentic freedom and humble creativity.”
The Pope will discuss the results of surveys that were issued to dioceses around the world. The survey included feedback about sexuality and the family. Pope Francis will work with his bishops and cardinals to develop a new response, in order to lead the Church into the modern world.
It will not be easy as many prominent Conservatives want the synod to reinforce Vatican doctrine on sexual matters. Cardinals such as Gerhard Mueller, the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, George Pell, an Australian who heads a Vatican economic committee and Raymond Leo Burke, an arch-conservative from the United States.
The Catholic Church still considers divorced Catholics who remarry to be living in sin. It says those Catholics can only receive Communion by abstaining from sex with their new spouses. With the world’s ever evolving views and approaches to marriage, the Church must contemplate ways to not isolate the global populace while holding on to their beliefs.
The Pope must now lead the discussion behind closed doors about thorny modern issues that conflict with the Church’s teachings. The Jesuit Pope has favored a leftist approach to issues concerning the Catholic Church. The Pope famously wrote a letter declaring that those who do not share his faith to “abide by their own conscience” and reminding them God’s mercy “has no limits.”
“The question for those who do not believe in God is to abide by their own conscience. There is sin, also for those who have no faith, in going against one’s conscience. Listening to it and abiding by it means making up one’s mind about what is good and evil.”
Pope Francis will hope that these discussion will mark the dawn of a new generation in the Catholic Church.
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