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Focus on God, not politics

Tone for Synod: Focus on God, not politics

In a momentous event at St Peter’s Square, Pope Francis inaugurated the Synod on Synodality with a powerful message, “the primary task of the synod is to focus on God and be a Church that shows mercy to humanity.”

Pope Francis presided over the opening Mass attended by nearly 500 priests, bishops and cardinals, emphasising the Church’s primary mission to bring Jesus to the world.

“We do not want to make ourselves attractive in the eyes of the world, but to reach out to it with the consolation of the Gospel, to bear witness to God’s infinite love in a better way and to everyone,” he said.

Referencing the call given to St Francis of Assisi to “Go, rebuild my Church,” Pope Francis reminded the assembly that the Church is in constant need of purification and repair as it comprises forgiven sinners striving to return to Jesus and His Gospel.

Synod not a political gathering

Addressing the fundamental question raised by Pope Benedict XVI at the 2012 Synod of Bishops, Pope Francis pondered how to communicate God’s reality effectively to today’s people. He asserted that this synod is not a political gathering or a polarised parliament but a place of grace and communion.

Pope Francis urged everyone present to focus on Jesus’ gaze which welcomes the weary and oppressed. He emphasised that this synod is not about human strategies, political calculations or ideological battles but about walking together with the gaze of Jesus and a focus on God.

The historic Mass marked a significant moment as for the first time it included laymen and women as full voting members of the XVI Ordinary Synod of Bishops.

In his homily, Pope Francis outlined his vision for a synodal Church, emphasising unity, fraternity, dialogue, blessing, encouragement and openness to faith’s beauty. He drew inspiration from St Francis who exemplified humility and unity in times of great struggle and division.

The synod will convene in the Vatican’s Paul VI Hall until October 29th, advising the Pope on the theme: “For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation, Mission.”


National Catholic Reporter

Catholic News Agency

AP News


Vatican Dicastery for Communication

CathNews New Zealand

Additional reading

News category: World. Focus on God, not politics

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