Bishops send latest NZ Synod consultation document to Rome

Published on 27th May, 2024

A new consultation document prepared as part of the Holy Father’s Synod 2021-24 process has been sent to Rome. Titled Towards October 2024, it includes Catholic voices from around Aotearoa New Zealand.

The document is the outcome of the NZ Catholic Bishops Conference being asked to establish a consultation process to discern responses to specific questions related to the Vatican’s Synodal Church in Mission report. That report was published after the First Session of the 16th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, held in Rome last October.

National Catholic lay organisations, agencies of the bishops conference, religious, diocesan bodies, educational institutions, young people’s groups, parish groups and groups involved in previous synodal processes took part in the consultation, between February and April this year.

Towards October 2024 was distilled from this consultation and has been sent to Rome as part of the continuing Synod process, begun by Pope Francis in 2021 to look at the future direction of the Catholic Church.

“Our people have spoken again with frankness and humility about their shared journey as the People of God, and about how we can be a synodal Church in mission,” the six Catholic bishops of Aotearoa NZ say in their introduction to the document.

“As we said when we presented our National Synod Synthesis in 2022, we may not agree with everything they have said, but we want their voices to be heard. Their responses to the various questions provide important insight into how we might together follow Jesus Christ, walking his way, telling his truth, living his life.”

Pope Francis launched the Synod process to hear what Catholics from around the world think should be the future direction of the Church. The first of a two-part 16th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops was held in Rome last October; the second part will be held this coming October. The Towards October 2024 document, and others like it from bishops’ conferences around the world, will provide the basis for the October assembly.

Source: NZCBC

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