The Synod

We're having a Synod and YOU are Invited! But what is a Synod?

Synods have historically been gatherings of Church hierarchy called by a Pope to discuss Church issues.  Simple? Pope Francis called two sequential synods in 2014-2015 to discuss and understand the contemporary lived experience of families. While any synod’s objective is to listen, exchange opinions and experiences, learn from the diversity of ideas and then to collegially and collectively plan action, Synods are listening events to broaden perspectives to achieve the best results possible.  

The word’s origin (Latin and Greek) means “embarking on a journey together.” Note the relational component “together” which defines a primacy of our faith. After all, relationships are the core of our Scripture stories: the good, the bad, and the ugly. We are called to build deeper relationships, to learn about other’s lives by encountering them, and to work together to resolve issues for the common good.

So why have we opted to hold the first-ever national Peoples Synod? 

  • We want dialogue on issues that improve our collective lives in these complex, vitriolic times rather than join in on the blaming, finger-pointing, name calling, pleas for attention and mercy and the personal threats so apparent in our society in all sectors. As an empowerment tool, dialogue is key to the right solution for right relationships to carry change forward.
  • We believe this global unrest is the Spirit stirring the proverbial pot shocking us to use our gifts and our faith to make a difference. 
  • Jesus spoke simply about what is needed in times like ours. It’s LOVE. We want to live that simplicity by using our gifts endowed by our Creator to live a faith that becomes the change we want to see in the world. We need dialogue on how to make that simplicity a new national reality. 
  • To take action, respectful dialogue is essential in evaluating the many solution paths before us to exchange views yielding a process and outcome with local impact.  Pope Francis, a genius in strategic planning, was elected to address the systemic and structural problems in the institution, and he owns its solution.
  • We selected a successful global process-solution through The Circle Way, a “back to the future” process that demonstrates the introspective power of circle dialogue. After all, native Americans have used this process for generations since it physically levels the playing field; it provokes dialogue to offer another dimension of understanding (body language) where we can better understand another’s opinion, where that opinion was rooted and why. 
  • The Circle experience is sacred, is the voice of the Spirit prodding, guiding, and showing us The Way. It is not just a listening circle; it is a deep way of understanding the whole problem and solution.

We’d love for you to join us in this exciting, first-of-its-kind respectful treatment of the People of God. We’re not just about talk. We have too long been passive disciples following a direction we do not own. We must become apostles of our faith. When we shared that perspective with a bishop, his response was “You can’t do that. There were only twelve!” We responded “We don’t support closed sets. Those who take the Gospel message out to others are by definition apostles.” Silence followed. 

Come! Experience faith in action like perhaps you have never witnessed and be a pioneer, an ambassador, to the message of LOVE that can only eradicate polarization. 

We are being encouraged to become an action population who are being called to practice our faith actualizing our rights and responsibilities received at Baptism. Basically, we are empowering one another through dialogue using a tried-and-true method called the Circle Way.