Whether you have just joined our team or are considering joining with us, we have an exciting plan we’ve created for 2014. We began our first few month as a movement centered primarily focused on letter writing. During this phase we sent three letters to Pope Francis and his Council to correspond to their three Council meetings held between October 2013 and February 2014. Now we are in an action mode which is building with momentum day by day. We hope you will be excited about our objectives and be willing to jump in and get involved in this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
Per our Advisory Group, our CCR Int’l focus for 2014 is to make a deliberative impact on the Extraordinary Synod on the Family called by Pope Francis scheduled for October 5 – 19, 2014. After all, given that the chosen topic is “the pastoral challenges for the family in the context of evangelization,” both knowledge and experience of these challenges need to be understood before meaningful resolutions can be reached. It is our objective to do all in our power to gather the voices of the People of God from all around the world and offer to the Synod a true sensus fidelium of the challenges faced by countless Catholics striving to live a Christian family life. In large part, the future of our Church rests on the outcome of this Synod together with the Synod of Bishops to follow in 2015.
As you may know from our newsletters, www.cathollicchurchreform.com/newsletters.html, we are going to be setting up Regional Gatherings around the world inviting practicing Catholics, Catholics who have drifted away, or Catholics no longer having any identify with the Church to share their views and life experiences on the challenges of living as Christian families today in the context of Church teachings. This will be managed by the Regional Gatherings committee. We will provide a template to standardize all the meetings and provide an agenda of each of the family-related topics. These topics are currently being developed by the Position Paper committee and will provide each gathering with a document that (1) states succinctly the current stance of the church on that topic; (2) offers an explanation of how and why this stance presents a challenge to the various ways in which Catholics are living the Christian family life today; and finally, and what makes our approach unique, (3) presents a solution. We want to propose a “way out” for the bishops to ease them into addressing the issue as Jesus himself would do if he were here with us walking the earth today. Each gathering will be asked to have someone take the minutes and the organizer will be asked to complete our report form on Survey Monkey. Our Report Tallying committee will collect the results of all the worldwide gatherings and organize them into a summary report to present to the Synod of Bishops on behalf of the People of God worldwide. All of this will be overseen by the Internal Communications committee who will keep information flowing so that each committee knows what the other is doing. In our desire to be inclusive of a worldwide network, our Translation Committee will help convert the position papers and media releases into other languages as needed.
Not wanting to miss the opportunity to have an influence on the outcome of the Synod, we will begin earlier to present what we already know from survey results, to the media, to the Synod of Bishops, to Bishops Conferences worldwide, and to Pope Francis and his council. This will all be done through the Media committee. The final results of the Regional Gatherings will fine-tune our summary report to be provided to the Synod of Bishops for their consideration at the Extraordinary Synod. All of this will culminate in our gathering in Rome – what we’re calling the Forum on the Family: Listening to the Faithful to be held on Oct. 2 and 3, 2014. This will be organized by the Rome Logistics committee. Why this gathering? To demonstrate our support of Pope Francis for the calling of the Extraordinary Synod, to offer input to the Synod from the faithful who, unlike the bishops, actually live as Christian families, and to share our views with all the media that will be gathered from around the world for this extraordinary event. Added to this, it will also provide an opportunity for those of us who have been working together to actually meet each other in person and share a liturgy together that may be like no other Eucharistic meal in which any of us have ever participated.
In order to carry out such a massive undertaking, we have divided our work into committees as I’ve described above so that we can accomplish all of this in the months remaining before the Synod begins. If you have any interest in becoming more involved, and if you haven’t already, would you please take the time now to email back to info@CatholicChurchReform.com using this format to let us know:
- a little background about you and your interest in church reform;
- affirm which committee you want to join;
- explain what motivated you to join this committee;
- most importantly, what you feel you can best contribute; (We’d like to know your area of expertise and/or interest. Once we understand this, we may encourage you to join another committee where your talent would be put to better use.)
- If, in addition to serving on a committee, you would like to become even more involved, please let us know. We are always inviting more people to join our Advisory Group which is the team that really steers the CCR Int’l ship.
Again, here is the list of committees:
- Regional Gatherings (helping organize these) – If you haven’t already committed to join or organize a regional gathering, please do so now: http://www.catholicchurchreform.com/gatherings.html
- Logistics in Rome (planning this event)
- Media (all external communications)
- Report Tally (gathering the info and organizing all the worldwide reports)
- Subject Matter experts (participating in any one aspect of the following: doing research, writing or editing position papers, finding authorities on the various topics, and/or organizing the submissions into a standardized framework)
- Internal Communications (overseeing all the committees helping each individual committee see the big picture and know what the other is doing)
- Translation (position papers and media releases into other languages)
On behalf of CCR Int’l, we appreciate your support and welcome you to join with us in helping develop our plans for 2014. It will only be with the Spirit working through us and all of us pulling together that we can even hope to accomplish all of this.