Diocese of Fort Worth produces, posts diocesan Synod document

North Texas Catholic
(Jun 22, 2022) Local

Father Jonathan Wallis addresses the delegates at the diocesan pre-Synodal gathering. (NTC/Juan Guajardo)

Father Jonathan Wallis addresses the delegates at the diocesan pre-Synodal gathering. (NTC/Juan Guajardo)

FORT WORTH — The Diocese of Fort Worth has drafted the diocesan Synod document which presents the major topics from 121 listening sessions held across the 28-county diocese. The listening sessions focused on laity and clergy gathering together with the goal of discerning what the Holy Spirit is asking of the Church at this time.

The document which synthesizes these discussions has been posted in the diocesan website, fwdioc.org, and will be available for review through Friday, June 24.  View the document here.

The final diocesan synod document will be submitted by June 30 to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, which will assimilate information from every U.S. diocese in preparation for the 2023 assembly of bishops in Rome referred to as the Synod on Synodality. The final diocesan Synod report will also be posted on the diocesan website.

The document, available in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese, begins with a summary of the diocesan Synod process followed by a summary of the major themes that emerged in the listening sessions and concludes with an action plan.

The synod opened in the Diocese of Fort Worth with a Mass on October 17, 2021. After more than 100 listening sessions, 105 delegates met on May 7 for a diocesan pre-Synodal gathering and found common topics.

The major themes include: celebration of the Eucharist as the central point of unity in the Diocese of Fort Worth; gratitude for the local clergy and a desire to work toward an increase in priestly vocations; hunger for spiritual activities such as Mass, catechesis, Eucharistic Adoration, and spiritual retreats to build individual and communal relationships with God; and a desire for unity, engagement, understanding and help for each other, including those not journeying with us.

The findings from this first phase of the synodal process allow bishops to hear from a diverse section of Catholics — from parishioners to priests — in a spirit of collaboration and openness. Announced by Pope Francis in October 2021, the Synod invites participation from Catholics worldwide as the Church hopes to learn which processes can help it live communion, achieve participation, and open itself to mission.

The 3,311 people who attended listening sessions across the Diocese of Fort Worth came from both rural and urban parishes, four campus ministry groups, the deaf community, and retired residents of St. Francis Village. Forty-one responses also were received via survey from parishioners unable to attend a listening session. A wide range of age groups was represented.

Submitting the synthesized document to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops will end the diocesan phase of the synodal process, which was coordinated by Father Jonathan Wallis, vicar general, and Paola Quintero-Araujo, director of the St. Junipero Serra Institute.

“This is our opportunity to get a birds-eye view of the whole diocese and the great gifts and riches the Holy Spirit has given us,” Fr. Wallis said.

Synod, 2023, Diocese of Fort Worth, document, USCCB, trending-english