|Cardinal Tobin: Synod listening sessions express gratitude, concerns of diverse communities|
|My dear brothers and sisters in Christ,Pope Francis has issued an invitation to the whole Church to gather and listen to the Holy Spirit in prayer, sharing, and discernment to forge a way forward for the twenty-first century. In particular, he has invited all into a process of Synodality, a way of being Church that humbly seeks to understand what the Spirit is saying to us today. One of the goals of synodality is to find ways to connect the Gospel, the good news of Jesus Christ, to people’s everyday lives. All the information culled from this discernment process will be summarized and shared in ecclesiastical regions, continents, and ultimately with the Synod on Synodality in Rome in October 2023.The people of our local Church responded enthusiastically and generously to the invitation to participate in listening sessions held through the Archdiocese earlier this year to aid in preparation for the Synod on Synodality 2023. Parishioners, families, marginalized persons, parents, catechists, and many others expressed appreciation to Pope Francis for the opportunity to dialogue, discern and be heard. A great diversity of people participated. Persons from many different cultures, ethnic backgrounds, age groups, and languages joined together in prayer and small groups to listen to each other and discern how the Holy Spirit is calling us to be the Church, the Body of Christ, reaching out to the world. I regret that the Archdiocese could not arrange listening sessions with persons of other Christian churches and different religions.|
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