The synod on the family begins

I must try to get some writing done today, so I will not be posting much here today but I do want to call your attention to Robert Royal’s report today on some guiding principles for interpreting the onslaught of news and opinion that will be gushing out of Rome now that the synod on the family has begun.

He writes:

I hope TCT writers and readers alike will be informed, measured, and wise in all their reactions.


I was at the 2014 Synod and I saw how a very few inflammatory phrases could distract everyone from much needed efforts to shore up the family. We need to keep our eyes on the ball this time or the radicals will win by sheer default.

To help move us along, I’ve developed Robert’s Five Guiding Principles for the Synod. You may want to suggest others, but these are the crucial, the indispensable notions we’ll need in order to get the best out of what’s to come over the next three weeks, and beyond.

Principle No.1: Be Cautious About Drawing Large Conclusions. Everyone you meet will “know” what the Synod means. Wait. Practice healthy skepticism. Resist the temptation to claim things that will remain uncertain for a while. Truth takes time. Sometimes there may not be much truth in play. I’ve been in Europe the past several days, but followed the controversies about the pope’s meetings with Kim Davis and a gay couple at the nunciature in Washington. As shocking as it is that Papa Bergoglio maintains a casual relationship with a gay friend – something unthinkable for any past pope – and that Francis almost went into full stealth mode about Kim Davis and the Little Sisters of the Poor, I would not immediately draw any strong conclusions from any of it. Or from similar things you’ll see in coming days. The press just distorts too much, as do Vatican leaks.

Well, maybe I’d conclude a little about the gays. This pope is a man of gestures, not ideas. That doesn’t always mean he knows or can control what his gestures convey.


Go on over to read the other four principles.

And do read the texts of the Holy Father’s remarks today. You’ll find them and other information over at the Catholic Herald.   Keep an eye there as well for the daily letters from Xavier Rynne II.


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