Monday, 12 October 2015

Voice of the Family reflects on the first week of the Ordinary Synod on the Family

Voice of the Family offers below a selection of news and analysis of the first week of the Ordinary Synod on the Family.

Voice of the Family is an initiative of Catholic laity from 26 pro-life, pro-family organisations from all five continents. The coalition was formed to put our experience and resources at the service of the cardinals and bishops attending the two synods on the family. It was co-founded by the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children and Lifesite News:

International coalition issues manifesto as Vatican family synod opens

The Code of Canon Law secures to all the Christian faithful, “according to the knowledge, competence and expertise which they posses”, the “right and even at times the duty to manifest to the sacred pastors their opinion on matters which pertain to the good of the Church and to make their opinion known to the rest of the Christian faithful.” (Canon 212)

In order to better fulfil this duty Voice of the Family has produced a manifesto, which presents the most serious concerns held by the members of our coalition. Noting “with alarm the increasing tendency of prominent figures within the hierarchy of the Church to promote positions contrary to the Catholic faith and the natural moral law”, Voice of the Family appeals to Pope Francis and the Church’s teaching authorities “to take all necessary steps to protect the integrity of Catholic doctrine and, by so doing, to protect our families from the ravages of the culture of death.”

The manifesto calls upon the Synod “firmly and unambiguously” to uphold the Church’s teaching on the indissolubility of marriage, the evil of adultery, the wrongness of homosexual unions, the sinfulness of contraception.

The manifesto is available in EnglishItalian; Spanish; French.

Leading African cardinal critiques Vatican spokesman Fr. Rosica (

South African Cardinal Wilfrid Napier, a leading cardinal on the organizing committee for the Synod on the Family, issued a pointed critique on Twitter of a controversial report on the Synod by the Vatican’s English-language spokesman, Fr. Thomas Rosica, in which the priest emphasized that the Church should “embrace reality” in dealing with sinful situations.

Rosica’s summary of Synod fathers’ addresses at Tuesday’s press briefing was criticized for its emphasis on liberal proposals and the strong language he used to describe them. The remarks fuelled ongoing concerns from last year’s Synod about the manipulation of the message by the Vatican press office and the Synod’s organizing body.

Liberal Catholic game plan: Let local churches decide morality (

The German Catholic Youth Organisation has called for local churches to decide on matters of doctrine. Its president told a conference:
"Therefore, we hope that the Synod accepts the cultural differences between local churches and that it puts more trust in the consciences of the faithful, rather than in the communication of individual norms of interdiction ... We work for the acceptance of same-sex relationships."
This call for the delegation to local churches was echoed in the report by the Synod's French B circle:
"Diversity requires an articulation of what is of a universal order and of a particular order, a strong common word able to respond to particular situations. In this respect the group proposes that the episcopal conferences hold a determined power to allow their pastors to be good Samaritans in their ecclesial service."
LGBT pre-synod conference gets strong episcopal backing

An international conference entitled Ways of Love: Snapshots of Catholic Encounters With LGBT People and Their Families took place last weekend in Rome. The conference was sponsored by the “Global Network of Rainbow Catholics”, a worldwide network of organisations that, in the name of “social justice”, demand inclusion and dignity for LGBT people and their families within the Catholic Church and society in general. The meeting was attended by Catholic pastoral leaders from around the world, who work in favour of LGBT people within their ecclesiastical communities. In addition to drawing up new action plans, a clear and stated objective of the initiative was to apply some pressure to the impending crucial Ordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family. Among the speakers was a Dominican Bishop Raúl Vera López from the Mexican diocese of Saltillo.

Superficial synod reports give green light to attacks on life and family
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Last week cardinals and bishops attending the Ordinary Synod on the Family separated into thirteen small groups to discuss the first part of the Instrumentum Laboris and propose amendments to the document. The reports of their work, made public yesterday, reveal a striking failure to protect the family from the serious threats contained within the first part of this heterodox preparatory document.

Voice of the Family has published an analysis of the Instrumentum Laboris of the Ordinary Synod on the Family. Our other publications are available here.

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