Synod 2010: Work/Study Groups
The program for the 2010 Synod of the Baptized is being developed by our work/study groups. We start with the fact of our baptism into the Christian Church. The Roman Catholic Church as a Christian community is committed to the mission of modeling the love of God for humanity as Jesus did in the new covenant. Each diocese and each parish is an instance of the Christian Church and is committed to the mission. Within each community individuals grow in grace through loving human interaction. What practices can help us grow?
As baptized persons we have the responsibility to create the Church community that fulfills the mission. So the question we are asking is: How do our Catholic religious practices mirror the love within the Trinity and the love of God for humanity? Do they promote and support community, equality, inclusion, spiritual growth, adult moral sensitivity and integrity?
Each work/study group is taking an area of Catholic culture and asking what practices we can undertake to create the kind of Christian community that models the loving relationships the mission demands.
Bishop Selection: What kind of leadership do we need for the Church’s mission and what are the procedures we can recommend to choose such leaders?
Catholic Spirituality:What spiritual practices do we engage in to ground us in communities of mutual love and cooperation? Do we see God in the world around us?
Christian Identity/Catholic Identity:What practices will raise our consciousness of identity and mission within the archdiocesan community?
Human Sexuality:What practices will promote an understanding of sexuality in all its variations as integral to personality, communication, and holiness?
Emerging Church: What is the phenomenon of emergence and what practices will raise our consciousness of the process of becoming Church?
Children, Youth and Families:What practices will ensure spiritual growth for children and youth? Is the mission of the family, the birth community, the same as the mission of the Church?
Mandatory Celibacy /Clericalism:What practices will promote the consciousness of equality of the baptized both ordained and lay? Does a clerical caste within the community work toward mission?
Church as a Community of Equals:As we work to envision Church as a community of equals, we must address the role and effects of patriarchy. We will seek ways to re-balance the Church’s system of power to better reflect the Gospel, such that all members have a voice and are equally cherished.
Authority and Governance:What practices can align the idea of authority and the governance of the community with the mission of the Church? What kind of institution do we need?
Social Justice in the Church: What practices will raise our consciousness about the Church’s mission to alleviate economic insecurity? Anxiety about survival can kill the human spirit. A Jesus community cannot be excessive consumers while others suffer.
Church as a Community of Equals: What practices will break down the patriarchal culture within the Church? Imbalance of power is destructive of human spirit and corrupts institutions/communities.
Communication in a Polarized Community: What practices will bridge the divide between Catholics with different views of the Church’s mission? Animosity between factions in the Roman Catholic Church is fatal to the Church’s mission. How do we reach down to what unites us while respecting our differences?If you would like to join one of the work/study groups or begin one of your own, call Paula Ruddy (612) 379-1043 or the facilitator listed with the group you choose.