"When leaders in various fields ask me for advice, my response is always the same: dialogue, dialogue, dialogue. It is the only way for individuals, families and societies to grow, the only way for the life of peoples to progress, along with the culture of encounter, a culture in which all have something good to give and all can receive something good in return. Others always have something to give me, if we know how to approach them in a spirit of openness and without prejudice. I call this attitude of openness and availability without prejudice, social humility, and it is this that favours dialogue. Only in this way can understanding grow between cultures and religions, mutual esteem without needless preconceptions, respectful of the rights of everyone. Today, either we stand together with the culture of dialogue and encounter, or we all lose, we all lose; from here we can take the right road that makes the journey fruitful and secure." (Pope Francis, Address to leading members of Brazilian society, Saturday July 27 2013, reported online by Official Vatican Network.)

Cultural Issues for the Synod

 

JIndianresponseThe Extraordinary Synod on the Family scheduled for October has captured the attention of the faithful like no other synod. Simply because this time the bishops will be discussing an issue on which the laity are experts.

The enthusiasm of the “laity” is plain to see from the numbers of user-friendly surveys that have spun off from the Vatican questionnaire addressed to the bishops last October. As the Catholic Organizations for Renewal, a US-based partnership of 15 Catholic groups observed in a letter to their bishops, “individual Catholics are hungry to make their voices heard”.

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