Synod on the Family

Pope Francis kisses a baby on his way to his weekly audience in the Vatican.
           James Hanvey, University of OxfordGiven the media attention around the Catholic Church’s latest synod on the family, with its rumours of schism, plots, and the self-outing of a gay Vatican priest with his partner, one might think that the whole event was scripted by Umberto Eco or Dan Brown. But its effects, which reinforce much of the Church’s teaching on the family, may prove long-lasting.Despite reports saying otherwise, the...
Reviewing the Synod on the Family, October 2015
Three weeks of intense work have ended. It has been an incredible experience to be at and live through a Synod of Bishops. No significant changes to Church discipline or doctrine are on the cards. There was no agreement on the hot-button issue of admitting the divorced and civilly re-married to Communion. As the Synod ends there are two reactions: for some, relief that Church teaching has been affirmed; for others, disappointment - especially for those in difficult circumstances who had hoped...
Salt and Light TV have been providing coverage of the Synod on the Family currently taking place in Rome. They took some time to talk to Fr General Adolfo Nicholás SJ, head of the Jesuits worldwide. Watch the video >>
Jesuit parishes in the Archdiocese of Westminster have heard Cardinal Vincent Nichols' first-hand reflection on the Synod on the Family. In a pastoral letter read out at all Masses in the diocese, he called his participation a privilege, saying he found it “a rich and moving experience”.In addition to the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Farm Street, Mayfair, the Jesuits serve St Ignatius parish in Stamford Hill and St Anselm’s in Southall. Parishioners at these...
Paul VI
The close of the recent Synod of Bishops gathered to discuss family life issues, was the occasion of beatifying Paul VI.  It is unfortunate that Paul is remembered negatively by many because of his encyclical Humanae Vitae 1968 (‘On Human Life’).  It may be that Humanae Vitae, while missing a strategic opportunity, was in many ways prophetic. The opportunity missed was the occasion to articulate clearly the difference between contraception and the taking of human life....
Father General has compared the Synod on the Family that concluded at the weekend with the Second Vatican Council. Reflecting on the discussions that took place in Rome on marriage and relationships, Fr Adolfo Nicolás SJ told Salt and Light TV that he hoped one of the positive results of the Synod of Bishops would be “a change of pastoral attitudes”. Rather than aiming to reach conclusions at the Synod, Fr Nicolás said its purpose was to look carefully and compassionately at the...
A biography of Pope Paul VI – who is due to be beatified by Pope Francis this weekend – has been reissued by the Catholic Truth Society. Originally published in 2008, it was written by British Jesuit, Fr Anthony Symondson SJ. Pope Francis will beatify Pope Paul VI during the closing Mass of the extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family in Rome on Sunday.Giovanni Battista Montini was born in 1897 in the northern Italian province of Brescia and was ordained to the priesthood in...
Father Adolfo Nicolás Pachón SJ, the Superior General of the Jesuits, is one of six prelates appointed by Pope Francis to help draft the revised relatio for the Synod of Bishops currently taking place in Rome.The revised relatio is regarded as the key document as the Synod on the Family goes forward. Its primary drafter is Cardinal Peter Erdo, who, with two other synod officials, has been tasked with summing up the first week of debate. The document to be released on Monday will form the basis...
Several Jesuits are among the delegates at the extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family taking place in the Vatican over the next two weeks. The Synod began its working sessions yesterday (Monday), having been formally opened with Mass celebrated in St Peter’s the previous day. Pope Francis is expected to attend all of the working sessions, along with 253 other participants. Yesterday, he urged delegates to "speak with frankness and listen with humility".Among the 191 voting...
A programme to be broadcast on BBC Radio 4 tomorrow (Thursday 2 October) will examine the impact that Pope Francis has had on the Church and the world since he was elected to the papacy 18 months ago.Francis: The Pope's Calling is part of The Report series. It will take as its starting point the moment when the phone rang at the office of the Italian newspaper La Repubblica and a man asked to speak to Eugenio Scalfari, the paper's 90 year old founder and a prominent atheist. The...