Monday, October 27, 2014

Extraordinary Synod On The Family

The two Catholic papers had editorials on the Extraordinary Synod on the family that was recently concluded. The Korean Church was not upset as many in the West, divided into different camps and with different understandings of Church. The Pope at the end of the Synod did take the middle road and had critical words for both the traditionalists and the progressive and liberals.These camps, within the Church, are forming in Korea but they have not reached the level of the West.

Korean Catholicism doesn't carry the baggage of the West so they are able to read what is said and accept it with little trouble. "Whatever is received, is received in the manner of the one receiving"  and Korea as a young Church, strong in faith, helped by the  martyrs and with a great love for the pope are an obedient Church.

Both papers mentioned how the Synod was not only interested in the communion for the divorced and remarried, and  acceptance of those with a homosexual orientation, but with all the problems that married persons have to contend with in life. The majority did accept the two paragraphs on the married and homosexuality of the final revised report, but not with the 2/3 majority required for inclusion in the finally paper, but the two paragraphs will be part of the discussion at next years synod.

Family is the smallest church, and societies' smallest unit; at the same time the origin of many of our  problems, and  where we need to find fundamental solutions. Consequently, we all know that if we don't foster healthy families, the roots and trunk of society and the church are in danger.

This year with the end of the Extraordinary Synod we will begin  preparing  for the Ordinary Synod next year. Korean Catholicism will begin preparing for the Synod with a greater understanding of the problems of family begun years earlier. One of the editorials  was concerned with a possible too literal interpretation of the catechism.

The Church did not begin in the temple, or the synagogue or in the desert, but in a  room of a family house. The Last Supper was in a room of a house and the Holy Spirit descended in a room of a family house.

The Eucharist is the 'salvation here in the present'. The Eucharist is the coming together of God and the Church. We are here given the sign that we have  been saved. The pope  wants to find ways to bring back to the fold those who have been excluded by the regulations of the Church. The editorial mentions that Jesus' standard was not the law but the good news.

One of the editorials concludes with the words of Pope Francis that we should never be afraid of treating the wounds of those who are hurting. We should not overlook persons who need God's mercy. How to do that without opposing the words of Jesus  will be the task of the next Synod.

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