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NCR: Synode arbejdspapir er kedeligt og glædesløst

27. juni 2014

Thomas Reese, National Catholic Reporter, skriver bl.a.:

If married life is as boring and joyless as this document, I am glad I am celibate.


A document "intended to provide an initial reference point" for the October Synod of Bishops on the family was released Thursday at the Vatican. The document acknowledges that "the primary task of the church is to proclaim the beauty of the vocation to love," but there is little beautiful or inspiring in this document.

The 85-page document, called an instrumentum laboris or working paper, is based on responses toa questionnaire sent out from the Secretariat of the Synod in October. Compiling input from numerous sources does not lead to a coherent presentation or scintillating prose. Drawing up the paper was more difficult than usual because of the large number of responses and the limited time the secretariat had to do its job.

The secretariat undoubtedly did what it did for earlier synods: put the responses into two piles. Into the first and most important pile go the responses from bishops' conferences, the Roman Curia, and those bishops who will attend the synod. The second pile contains responses from individual bishops and others, including the laity. The first pile gets the most attention.


Despite the numerous problems cited by the working paper, it still has hope for "a new springtime for the family," which it believes will be led by young people who "see a value in a stable, enduring relationship and express a real desire to marry and form a family." How this jives with the fact that young people are delaying marriage, hooking up, practicing birth control, and living together before getting married remains to be seen.

Based on the experience of the 1980 synod, the impact of the instrumentum laboris could be short-lived. The 1980 document was criticized for leaving out important input from some bishops' conferences. The report done later by the synod "relator," appointed by Pope John Paul II, was much more important in guiding the synod than the instrumentum laboris.

The relator's brilliance and organizational skills impressed the synod fathers. Predictions were made that he would be brought to Rome to head up the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and a year later, these predictions came true as Joseph Ratzinger was appointed CDF prefect.


Hele artiklen er <her>

Vatican - Synod of Bishops on the family: instrumentum laboris or working paper

- som pdf: <her>

National Catholic Reporter: Vatican questionnaire for the synod on the family

National Catholic Reporter, artikel samling: Synod on the Family

Wikipedia: Thomas Reese