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Pope appoints committee to draft Synod report; Synod fathers choose their own reporters

October 13, 2014

Pope Francis has appointed six prelates to a committee to help draft the final report of the Synod of Bishops.

The Synod report is ordinarily drafted by the relator general: for this Synod meeting, Cardinal Peter Erdo. But the Pope has taken the unusual step of appointing other prelates to a drafting committee. The Pontiff named Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi of the Pontifical Council for Culture, Cardinal Donald Wuerl of Washington, Archbishop Victor Manuel Fernández of Argentina, Archbishop Carlos Aguiar Retes of Mexico, Bishop Bishop Peter Kang U-il of South Korea, and Father Adolfo Nicolás, the Jesuits’ father general.

Meanwhile the Synod participants have elected the relators who will report on the proceedings of the small working groups that will meet this week. While the Pope’s choices for the final drafting committee were generally regarded as liberal prelates, the Synod participants chose several more conservative prelates to report for their small groups. Among them are Cardinal Raymond Burke for one of the English-speaking groups; Cardinal Robert Sarah and Archbishop Andre-Joseph Leonard for two of the French-speaking groups; and Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco for an Italian-speaking group.

 
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  • Posted by: koinonia - Oct. 13, 2014 4:55 PM ET USA

    According to one report (Rorate Caeli), this action on the part of the Holy Father was "ad hoc, and without prior announcement." This surprising direct intervention by the Holy Father in the face of the selections made by the Synod participants actually seems to be more newsworthy than the individual selections. Already, this Synod stands to be a topic of in-depth discussion long into the future.

  • Posted by: jg23753479 - Oct. 13, 2014 3:57 PM ET USA

    The really important words here? " While the Pope’s choices for the final drafting committee were generally regarded as liberal prelates...." So much evidence is accumulating, all pointing in exactly the same direction.