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Be inspired by God through synodal spiritual conversation, Cardinal Farrell tells youth ministry leaders

May 24, 2024

» Continue to this story on Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life

CWN Editor's Note: Addressing the International Congress on Youth Ministry in preparation for the 2027 World Youth Day in Seoul, Cardinal Kevin Farrell encouraged participants to be “inspired by God” through the synodal practice of spiritual conversation.

“It is not, in fact, about putting together various points of view, or having a debate, or finding the right mechanisms to arrive at a large majority on the decisions to be taken,” the prefect of the Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life and Camerlengo of the Holy Roman Church explained to 300 delegates from 110 nations. “Instead, it is about a real prayer experience. A form of ‘collective prayer’, we might say, that helps the inspirations of the Spirit to emerge.”

“The Holy Spirit does not only speak to individuals separately, but also inspires collective desires, shared projects and common aspirations,” he continued in his address to the delegates, who were chosen by episcopal conferences. “These come from the Spirit who then creates consensus around them in a listening community.”

“So, I am inviting you to adopt this spiritual perspective, to allow yourselves to be inspired by God and also to allow yourselves to be ‘awakened’ by the Holy Spirit speaking through the voice of young people and operating in them,” Cardinal Farrell added.

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  • Posted by: feedback - May. 24, 2024 7:22 AM ET USA

    Most Catholics in my observation have no idea what "synodal" means and never use that term. But if it's constantly used by the top brass and supposedly something really good for the Church, why not define it once and for all?