Thursday, September 19, 2013

Countdown to Synod 2013

is less than two weeks away!

If you haven't registered yet, now is the time to do so!

To register online,
click here.
(To have an informational brochure/registration form
mailed to you, call 612-379-1043.)

The Progressive Catholic Voice is committed to "Co-creating the Living Church" and so presents today Part 5 of its "Countdown to Synod 2013" series. In this latest installment we share the descriptions of the Synod's seven afternoon break-out sessions. When registering, you will be asked to select one of these sessions.

NOTE: For previous installments in the "Countdown to Synod 2013" series, see:
Part 1: When, Where, Why, What!
Part 2: Synod 2013 Keynote Speaker: Sister Gail Worcelo
Part 3: Synod 2013 Theme: Evolutionary Spirituality
Part 4: Media Coverage of Synod 2013 and CCCR

Part 5: Break-Out Sessions of Synod 2013 . . .

1. Integrating the Universe Story with Our Christian Story
Facilitator: Nancy Cosgriff

In this session we explore how the Christ Story and the Universe Story intersect. We will consider these questions: What do we mean by Christ Consciousness? What do the words and deeds of the historical Jesus tell us about his essence and his consciousness? What do we mean by the Universe Story? How do these expanded understandings help us become co-creators of the living Church and of our times? What action outcomes might emerge from this?

2. Envisioning an Integral Church
Facilitator: Tom Smith-Myott

We will introduce a developmental framework for building/evolving a church that provides a safe—and challenging—place for everyone, wherever they are on their journey. What is an "integral church"? It involves telling a new and universal cosmic story and integrating it with the Judeo-Christian story. It involves awareness of developmental stages of consciousness. . It's about evolving a more inclusive, holistic institutional structure and leadership. We will discuss the principles of integration and how we can make this happen in our local church.

3. Moving Beyond Alienation with the Church
Facilitators: Pat Walsh and Bonnie Strand

Are you able to look at your feelings right now about the Church and accept it with compassion? Instead of giving energy to anger, fear, isolation, withdrawal, or resentment we can experience the freedom and spiritual transformation that Radical Acceptance brings to our life. With this awareness we can meet our ongoing life experiences from our inner self of wholeness, wisdom and love. This is our deepest nature, the very self Jesus calls forth to co-create the living church. Join us for images, music, stories questions—lots of questions— and discussions to get an understanding of the power and compassion of Radical Acceptance.

4. Building Alternative Models of Church
Facilitator: Mary Beth Stein

How did the first community of Jesus followers, a community that was characterized by "See how they love one another," evolve into the domineering hierarchical institution we experience today? The 'reign of God,' living the teachings of Jesus in our time and place, is the center around which everything in the church should revolve. This break-out session will reflect on eight movements inspired by Vatican II that are moving our Church toward becoming once again the community of transforming love that characterized the early Christian community. In our shared discussions, we will evaluate these eight movements, consider how they apply to the Church as we experience it, and discuss how we can participate in and nurture these movements in our work for church reform.

5. Developing a Healthy Perspective on Sexuality
Facilitator: Jim Smith

All around us we see signs that Catholics are evolving in their thinking on a range of issues relating to sexuality. Yet many other people, including most in positions of church authority, are fearful of this evolution, actively discourage others in participating in it, and resist involvement in it themselves. Yet where these fellow Catholics see sin and disorder, many of us have found the grace of God manifested in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) persons, relationships and families. Are there ways that we can encourage all within our church to seek and recognize the face of the Divine in diverse sexual orientations and gender identities? What are the steps we can take to attune ourselves to God's presence in LGBTQ lives? How do such steps help develop a healthy and authentically Catholic perspective on human sexuality?

6. Would You Like a Voice in the Selection of Our Next Archbishop?
Facilitators: Rose Marie Assad, Paula Ruddy, Carol Tauer and Patty Thorsen
Panel: Fr. Stephen Adrian, Fr. John Brandes, Fr. Patrick Griffin

In this break-out session we will explain briefly the current processes for bishop selection and discuss our need for leadership, the qualifications we are looking for in a bishop, and a preliminary slate of candidates for appointment. We need creative ideas for how to involve the priests, religious, and lay people of the Archdiocese in developing a final slate of candidates. Canon Law says we have the right and duty to express our spiritual needs to the official leaders. Come prepared to write to the papal nuncio, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganó, about your spiritual need for leadership in our local church. You bring an envelope and paper, we will provide the address and the stamp!

7. All Things Council
Facilitators: Karin Grosscup and Don Conroy

As laity we are integral to the evolutionary process of our church. Vatican II and the 1983 Code of Canon Law stated it is not only our right but our responsibility to speak to church leaders on matters concerning the church due to concerns of conscience. The Council of the Baptized was formed out of Synod of the Baptized 2011 to voice this conscience of the laity within our church. Much of the focus of our work came from participants in that Synod. We will share that work, gather concerns of conscience, and explore other forms of involvement in our evolving church.

Remember, Synod 2013 registration is easy!
You can register online, here.
Or call 612-379-1043 to have a brochure/registration form
mailed to you.

Looking forward to seeing you at
Synod 2013!

See also the previous PCV posts:
Save the Date: Synod of the Baptized, September 28, 2013
Countdown to Synod 2013 (Part 1)
Countdown to Synod 2013 (Part 2)
Countdown to Synod 2013 (Part 3)
Countdown to Synod 2013 (Part 4)
A Homily for Evolutionary Sunday
Dueling Worldviews

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