26Jun Synod of bishops – The pastoral challenges of the family In the context of evangelisation

The Vatican has today published the results of the consultation it had requested bishops to make in preparation for the synod to be held in Rome on 05 Ootober. A group of 150 bishops will meet to discuss the pastoral challenges of the family in the context of evangelisation.

Link to the full text  below and also the table of contents for your information.

http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/synod/documents/rc_synod_doc_20140626_instrumentum-laboris-familia_en.html

SYNOD OF BISHOPS

________________________________________________________

III EXTRAORDINARY GENERAL ASSEMBLY

THE PASTORAL CHALLENGES
OF THE FAMILY
IN THE CONTEXT OF EVANGELIZATION

INSTRUMENTUM LABORIS

VATICAN CITY

2014

Table of Contents

Abbreviations

Introduction

Preface

Part I
Communicating the Gospel of the Family in Today’s World

Chapter I
God’s Plan for Marriage and the Family

The Biblical Teaching on the Family (1-3)
The Family in the Documents of the Church
 (4-7)

Chapter II
The Knowledge and Acceptance of the Teachings on Marriage and the Family from Sacred Scripture and Church Documents 
(8)

The Knowledge of the Bible on the Family (9-10) 
The Knowledge of the Documents of the Magisterium
 (11)
The Necessity of Properly Prepared Clergy and Ministers
 (12)
A Diversified Acceptance of Church Teaching
 (13-14)
Some Reasons for the Difficulty in Acceptance
 (15-16)
Fostering a Greater Knowledge of the Magisterium
 (17-19)

Chapter III
The Gospel of the Family and the Natural Law

The Relation of the Gospel of the Family to the Natural Law (20)
Present-Day Problems Related to the Natural Law
 (21-26)
Practical Objections to the Natural Law concerning the Union between a Man and a Woman
 (27-29)
A Call for a Renewal in Terms of Language
 (30)

Chapter IV
The Family and Vocation of the Person in Christ

The Family, the Person and Society (31-34)
In the Image of Trinitarian Life
 (35)
The Holy Family of Nazareth and Learning to Love
 (36-38)
The Differences, Reciprocity and Manner of Living as a Family
 (39-42)
The Family and the Integral Development of a Person
 (43-44)
Guidance in the Renewed Desire to Marry and Form a Family and the Related Crises
 (45-48)
Ongoing Formation
 (49)

Part II
The Pastoral Program for the Family in Light of New Challenges

Chapter I
The Pastoral Program for the Family: Various Proposals Underway

The Responsibility of Bishops and the Clergy and the Charismatic Gifts in the Pastoral Care of the Family (50)
Marriage Preparation
 (51-56)
Popular Piety and a Familial Spirituality
 (57)
Support for a Familial Spirituality
 (58)
Testimony on Behalf of the Beauty of the Family
 (59-60)

Chapter II
The Pastoral Challenges of the Family
 (61)

a) The Crisis of Faith and Family Life

Pastoral Action in the Crisis of Faith (62-63)

b) Critical Situations within the Family

Difficulty in Relationships / Communication (64)
The Break-Up and Breakdown of Families
 (65)
Violence and Abuse
 (66-67)
Dependence, the Media and the Social Network
 (68-69)

c) External Pressures on the Family

The Impact of Work on the Family (70-71)
Migration and the Family
 (72)
Poverty and the Struggle for Subsistence
 (73)
Consumerism and Individualism
 (74)
Counter-Witness in the Church
 (75)

d) Special Situations

The Weight of Societal Expectations on the Individual (76)
The Impact of Wars
 (77)
Disparity of Cult
 (78)
Other Critical Situations
 (79)

Chapter III
Difficult Pastoral Situations

a) Situations in Families (80)

Cohabitation (81-82)
De facto unions (83-85)
Persons Separated, Divorced and Divorced and Remarried
 (86)
Children and Those Who Are Alone
 (87)
Teen Mothers
 (88)
Situations of Canonical Irregularity
 (89-92)
Concerning the Reception of the Sacraments
 (93-95)
Other Requests
 (96)
Concerning Separated and Divorced Persons
 (97)
Streamlining the Processing of Marriage Cases
 (98-102)
Pastoral Care in Difficult Situations
 (103-104)
The Request for Marriage by Non-Practicing Catholics and Unbelievers
 (105-109)

b) Concerning Unions of Persons of the Same Sex

Civil Recognition (110-112)
An Evaluation of the Particular Churches
 (113-115)
Some Pastoral Guidelines
 (116-119)
The Transmission of the Faith to Children in Same Sex Unions
 (120)

Part III
An Openness to Life and Parental Responsibility in Upbringing

Chapter I
The Pastoral Challenges concerning an Openness to Life
 (121-122)

Knowledge and Acceptance of the Magisterium concerning a Mentality of an Openness to Life (123-125)
Some Causes of Difficulty in Acceptance
 (126-127)
Pastoral Recommendations
 (128)
Concerning Sacramental Practice
 (129)
Promoting a Mentality of an Openness to Life
 (130-131)

Chapter II
The Church and the Family in the Challenge of Upbringing

a) The Challenge of Upbringing in General

The Challenge of Upbringing and the Family Today (132)
The Transmission of the Faith and Christian Initiation
 (133-134)
Some Specific Difficulties
 (135-137)

b) Christian Education in Difficult Family Situations (138)

An Overview of the Situation of Upbringing (139-140)
Requests Addressed to the Church
 (141-145)
The Response of the Particular Churches
 (146-150)
The Time and Manner of the Christian Initiation of Children
 (151-152)
Some Specific Difficulties
 (153)
Some Pastoral Guidelines
 (154-157)

Conclusion (158-159)

15 Responses

  1. MM

    I’ll read this and get back to you in a couple of years. Good job I’ve no nappies to change.
    Meanwhile this may be of interest:-
    http://ncronline.org/news/vatican/vatican-document-synod-family-balances-mercy-and-cultural-blame

  2. Eddie Finnegan

    So who among the 150 Synod Members will begin his intervention with this schemata-dumping declaration on the Instrumentum Laboris? “We must help the Holy Father (Francis) achieve his goals for this Synod and next year’s, the ones he expresses at Domus Sancti Marthae and Copacabana . . .”
    But who am I to judge . . .?
    In October 1962, it was a German Jesuit Cardinal Augustin Bea (Secretariat for Promoting Christian Unity) who launched his intervention: “We must help the Holy Father (John XXIII)achieve his goals for the Council, the ones he expresses in his radio messages and in his exhortations. These are not the same as those of the (10) schemas, either because the Theological Commission which directs them, is closed to the world and to ideas of peace, justice and unity; or because of the division of the work and a lack of co-ordination. They’ve made room for everything except the Holy Spirit . . .”
    Naturally, after a few minutes of that, both Ottaviani and Archbishop Lefebvre were fit to be tied. And the rest, at least for a brief window of hope, was Church history.

  3. Joe O'Leary

    I see that gays have been promoted from “those people” to “these people”!

  4. Sean O'Conaill

    Is there a cartoonist somewhere who could sketch all these mitred heads, with three speech bubbles overhead, from left to right:

    Bubble 1: “This is what married Catholics have told us about our teaching!”

    Bubble 2: “What should we do?”

    Bubble 3: “TEACH LOUDER!!!”

  5. Mary Cunningham

    For context of ‘these people’ (#3) see

    Chapter III
    Difficult Pastoral Situations
    b) Concerning Unions of Persons of the Same Sex
    Some Pastoral Guidelines
    116. ‘When considering the possibility of a ministry to these people, a distinction must be made between those who have made a personal, and often painful, choice and live that choice discreetly so as not to give scandal to others, and those whose behaviour promotes and actively — often aggressively — calls attention to it.’

    So ‘these people’ are better off to live ‘discreetly’. Secrecy, hiding the truth, fear of ‘scandal’, has the Vatican learned nothing? This mind set is not only ‘bonkers’ but downright dangerous bonkers for mental well-being.

    Have a look at this short documentary ‘Novena’ broadcast on 23/6/14

    http://www.rte.ie/player/ie/show/10296436/

  6. Joe O'Leary

    Rome consulted the laity in a widely distributed questionnaire. But the laity did not realize that this was a cheap form of inquisition. Rome now have our “Dubia” and is giving its “Responsa” according to the time-honoured format of the Holy Office. The Responsa sound quite familiar — “Negative ad omnes questiones,” “non licet,” “omnino improbandum et habendum pro falso et damnato,” “errores gravissimae, haeresi proximae.” In short, another episode in the ever-popular long-running series, “Rome Says No”.

    http://cta-usa.org/media-center/guiding-document-upcoming-synod-simply-old-hat/

  7. Joe O'Leary

    Let’s hope Francis adds a lot of laity and women to the Synod personnel.

  8. Association of Catholic Priests

    “Synod working paper is boring and joyless”
    Thomas Reese

    http://ncronline.org/blogs/faith-and-justice/synod-working-paper-boring-and-joyless

  9. Joe O'Leary

    Good comment here http://bilgrimage.blogspot.jp/2014/06/the-vatican-document-on-pastoral.html#more

  10. Anthony Murphy

    @Sean – teach louder???? Do you mean the teaching will progress from silence to a whisper??

  11. Eddie Finnegan

    So does Cardinal Baldisseri’s synod secretariat include a Bea, a Liénart, a Frings, a Congar or even a young Ratzinger, with sense enough to advise him to bin his ‘instrumentum laboris’ in good time for someone to write a new one over the next three months?

  12. Darlene Starrs

    I think, Father Joe, that Pope Francis has accomplished as much change as he, alone, can do! I do not hold out hope for any more remarkable change….

  13. Joe O'Leary

    Darlene, if he cannot invite women and laity to sit in on the Synod, he must be a very weak pope indeed.

  14. Darlene Starrs

    I suspect Pope Francis is feeling physically taxed and perhaps, if there is much truth to there being resistance to him at the Vatican, then he might also be weary from opposing the negativity. I do believe, his faith is great and that he wanted to accomplish the overhaul, as he called it, but it just may not be possible.

  15. Reyanna Rice

    If you read this document keeping in mind the many key phrases Francis uses in his writings and speeches/homilies, getting past the initial negative verbiage of the document, in the later sections I see “Francis Fingerprints” throughout it, quite significantly so in some sections. Some of the wording comes directly out of his recent speeches. For example in one section, it talks about kids who are left to fend for themselves for long parts of the day. In his speech to the St Egidio community recently, Francis spoke many of these same words talking about these kids as virtual orphans. The document has a very herk-jerky feel to it because of this but I find great hope in the fact that the “Francis ” Fingerprints” are on it. He speaks about the many groups that are in the peripheries of the church for various reasons, socioeconomic reasons, life choice reasons etc. I think he is viewing the cohort of the world’s bishops, most of them, on the peripheries of the church in their thinking in relation to the rest of us who stand very close to Francis in his “big tent” vision of the church.