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Quick Hits: After the Synod, praying for a miracle

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | Oct 28, 2019 | In Quick Hits

The Amazon Synod has ended, with entirely predictable results, in terms of the propositions endorsed by the participating bishops. But bear in mind that the Synod is only an advisory body, and the final outcome depends on how Pope Francis responds to the bishops’ advice, in the apostolic exhortation that will conclude the work of the Synod.

Msgr. Charles Pope is, like many of us, terribly disappointed with the Synod, and not optimistic about the papal document that will ensue. But he hasn’t given up hope, and he urges us to join him as we Pray for a Miracle:

Pray for an apostolic exhortation that glorifies and lifts up Jesus as the only way to salvation. An exhortation that focuses not merely on a clean environment but purified souls. An exhortation that doesn’t speak of listening to the spirits of the rainforest, but of listening to Jesus, the Eternal Word of the Father.

Bishop Athanasius Schneider released a powerful open letter on the Pachamama controversy, which every concerned Catholic should read. This statement is not merely a protest or a criticism; it carries the dignity of teaching, as befits his episcopal office (and his first name). “Faced with such an evident scandal, it is impossible that a Catholic bishop would remain silent,” he writes.

Yet most bishops are silent. And as I search for an explanation of why they are silent, I come across a quotation from Henri de Lubac:

If heretics no longer horrify us today, as they once did our forefathers, is it certain that it is because there is more charity in our hearts? Or would it not too often be, perhaps, without our daring to say so, because the bone of contention, that is to say, the very substance of our faith, no longer interests us?

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at CatholicCulture.org. See full bio.

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  • Posted by: Retired01 - Oct. 30, 2019 1:53 PM ET USA

    It is my understanding that Pope Francis appointed enough participants to the Synod to ensure the results that he wanted. For Pope Francis, the process is more important than the space. Thus, my guess is that he will not approve all the results of the Synod, but some of them. This way, he throws a bone to those bishops pretending they are interested in the substance of the face, allowing them they save face, while making his supporters happy and advancing his modernist agenda.

  • Posted by: nix898049 - Oct. 30, 2019 1:03 PM ET USA

    The forty days of prayer and fasting requested by Cardinal Burke and Bishop Schneider were so difficult to maintain with all the news reports. But as Saint Mother Theresa said, the Lord doesn't ask us to be successful, He asks us to be faithful. Perseverance!

  • Posted by: AgnesDay - Oct. 29, 2019 7:34 PM ET USA

    Thank heavens for the voice of Bishop Schneider. I was wondering if I was missing the voice of the Good Shepherd.

  • Posted by: TheJournalist64 - Oct. 29, 2019 7:12 PM ET USA

    My general feeling is that if the New York Times and Washington Post agree on anything, then the Church should hold the opposite opinion. I think the former publications like the output of the Synod, so, yes, pray for an orthodox outcome.