In March 2020, Pope Francis announced that the theme for the XVI Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops would be “For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation and Mission.” This Assembly is commonly know as the “Synod on Synodality.”
The journey towards the celebration of the Synod in October 2023 has been solemnly opened on 9-10 October 2021 in Rome, and on 17 October in every diocese across the world. See our Archdiocese of Melbourne information here.
On September 7, 2021, the preparatory document and the vademecum (handbook) for the synodal journey were released. This handbook explains how each diocese should engage with the Synod topic. In Australia we have already begun this sort of engagement with our Plenary Council – but now we can be part of a global Catholic effort to become synodal, with a focus on communion, participation and mission.
With these themes Pope Francis invites the entire Church to reflect on synodality, as a self-understanding that is decisive for its life and mission:
“It is precisely this path of synodality which God expects of the Church of the third millennium. This journey, which follows in the wake of the Church’s ‘renewal’ proposed by the Second Vatican Council, is both a gift and a task.”
If you would like further information, or a chat on synods and synodality, please contact Elissa via firstname.lastname@example.org
Prayer for the Synod
As we embrace this Synodal Process, this prayer invites the Holy Spirit to be at work in us so that we may be a community and a people of grace.
We stand before You, Holy Spirit,
as we gather together in Your name.
With You alone to guide us,
make Yourself at home in our hearts;
Teach us the way we must go
and how we are to pursue it.
We are weak and sinful;
do not let us promote disorder.
Do not let ignorance lead us down the wrong path
nor partiality influence our actions.
Let us find in You our unity
so that we may journey together to eternal life
and not stray from the way of truth
and what is right.
All this we ask of You,
who are at work in every place and time,
in the communion of the Father and the Son,
forever and ever.