We can only grow together, if we listen to each other and we can only grow together, if we can speak with candor and love. Pope Francis knows that and he has called the whole church to listen to all the faithful on how we walk together as church.
This process has come to St. Monica this year in February and March. Together, we had listening sessions for anyone who would like to join as well as listening sessions in our parish council, MOMs ministry, YMA, faith formation and in the High School. More than 200 people from our community heeded the call to come and share, to say what is important, but also to listen to each other in groups. A great thank you to all the facilitators and notetakers that made this possible.
The fruits of these conversations, the notes, were synthesized by our reporters (see below). A big thank you to Kitty and Elizabeth for doing all of this work as volunteers and creating a report that represents those voices authentically.
We are looking forward to having more conversations about what was brought up and do more listening, one on one and as a community. We are also looking forward to the continuation of the synodal process up the ranks. We will follow the process of synthesized reports and be eager to share what they will look like and what Pope Francis and the Bishops will do with them. Stay tuned. Explore below regarding the Synodal process at St. Monica and beyond.
-Dominik Gnirs, Assoc. Director of Faith Formation
Thank you to all our volunteers that aided in capturing the voices of all of our parishioners within the Synodal Process at St. Monica !
Vicky Landin, Teresa Cordeiro, Bonnie Crocker, Peter Heller, Elizabeth Johnstone, Roland Labana, Nicole Gilbert, Jakub Hlvaka, and Emily Arazawa.
Lynn Kurata, Olivia Noronha, Chris Nakagawa, Maria Lingbanan, Kelly Brooks, Lisa Berkshire, Rose Ryder, and Diane Gasper.
Elizabeth Johnstone and Kitty Felde
The report we submitted to the Archdiocese will be synthesized together with many other reports from other parishes in the Archdiocese, which will then be sent to the USCCB. That subsequent report will be synthesized with all the reports from all the US dioceses, creating a final report that will be submitted to Rome. Pope Francis and the bishops will have a synod to look at those reports, all the reports from all the Bishop’s Conferences around the world, and they will discuss them, draw conclusions. [The Archdiocesean timeline for the Synodal Process is listed below.]
Who knows, maybe one of our comments will be read by Pope Francis and his cardinals and bishops!
This report comes in two parts: The first part is the report submitted to the Archdiocese in the format provided by the Archdiocese. This report had to be short to fit the format and it gives for each of the areas the highlights and common themes from the conversations. Yet, it also gives voice for the minority of comments, the ones that “varied from the majority," because we don’t want to forget those voices and what they have to tell us.
The second part of the report contains more comments and voices and many of these are very specific to our community and need local context to be understood. It would not have made sense to include them in a report that will be synthesized with other parishes’ reports. Yet, we want to share these voices, hear them, ponder them and use them to move forward as a community. That is why we are publishing this second part here:
Presented: Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022
Karen shared with us the Archdiocesan Synodal process and how this process is an invitation for communities to become a people that "journey together" and she answers the questions: What is synodality and what it can look like in our communities and everyday life. The entire sessions is available to view above.
"Journeying together" is understood as listening to each other, celebrating, mission-driven, discernment-based, full participation, consultation, and dialogue.
Conducted: Thursday, Feb. 10, 2022
Listening session agenda: How have we been "journeying together" as a church in recent years? We are looking for concrete examples of fruitful experiences as well as examples of what has hindered the process of "journeying together." We invite you to share positive experiences and bring to light challenging and negative experiences.
Conducted: Thursday, Feb. 17, 2022
Listening session agenda: How might the Holy Spirit be inviting our Church to "journey together" more fully in the coming years? What are your hopes for the Church to live in deeper unity, to promote participating, and to proclaim the Gospel? We ask for concrete examples.
*Click the image above for the Listening Sessions Guide.
Archdiocesan Website on the Synod Process: https://synod.lacatholics.org/
USCCB website on the Synod Process: https://www.usccb.org/synod
Vatican website on the Synod Process: https://www.synod.va/en.html