Council discusses a national synthesis that will serve as a roadmap for the Church in India over the next decade
The Council of Catholic Bishops of the Indian Latin Rite held its synodal consultation from July 26 to 28 in Bangalore, capital of the state of Karnataka. (Photo provided)
The Council of Indian Latin Rite Catholic Bishops concluded its national synod on July 28 to finalize its synthesis for the 2021-23 synod.
“The three-day summary of the July 26-28 Synodal Consultation was held in Paalanaa Bhavana, Bengaluru, the capital of Karnataka State, with the participation of 60 delegates from across the country,” Fr. Stephen Alathara, Deputy Secretary General. of the Conference of Catholic Bishops of India (CCBI), said in a press statement.
He indicated that the deliberation brought down the curtain on July 28 with the solemn Eucharistic celebration with Cardinal Oswald Gracias of Bombay and other archbishops as concelebrants.
The national synod involving 15 bishops, 12 priests, 10 religious and 27 lay leaders from different dioceses across the country presented a one-page report.
Each presentation was discussed at length and the suggestions offered by the house were taken into consideration. However, details of the project have yet to be released.
Cardinal-elect Filipe Neri Ferrao of Goa and Daman, in his opening address, recalled how Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King dreamed of a better future, just as Jesus Christ continued his mission.
“To walk with the Church in her mission, we must foster communion within and without”
“Today’s Gospel speaks to us of Jesus’ dream for his disciples, for us. This dream of Jesus for his disciples has two facets: communion and mission. To walk with the Church in her mission, we must foster communion within and without,” the Prelate said.
The CCBI press release said that this national synthesis will thus effectively serve as a roadmap for the Church in India over the next decade.
“As the first national phase of the Synod for a Synodal Church draws to a close, we hope that this national synod will be an opportunity for the Latin Church in India to discern new ecclesial paths and adopt creative pastoral approaches that will help it to be a truly authentic synodal church,” the statement read.
This will result in the promotion of greater ecclesial communion, participation and mission: the three aspects of the synod 2021-23.
“It is the dream of the Holy Father Pope Francis to promote a synodal church in all its aspects in order to make it more relevant for our times,” the statement read.
The Catholic Church in India comprises the Latin Rite and two Eastern Rites – Syro-Malabar and Syro-Malankara.
The Latin Rite follows the Roman liturgy introduced by European missionaries in the 15th century, while the two Eastern Rites, both based in Kerala, follow the traditions of the Syrian Church and trace their origins to Saint Thomas the Apostle.
In the meantime, the theme of the Synod of Bishops is “For a synodal Church: communion, participation and mission”.
The synod is a two-year process of listening and dialogue that began in Rome on October 9-10, 2021, with each diocese and church celebrating the following week on October 17.
The Synod process on synodality will end in 2023.