Cardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich, relator general of Synod on Synodality, speaks to the media on June 20, 2023, at the temporary headquarters of the Holy See Press Office in Vatican City. Daniel Ibáñez/CNA
The synod leaders continued to stress that there is no preset agenda or political bent to the Synod on Synodality and that it does not function like a parliament.
“The greatest concern of the Synod Secretariat and mine personally has been to always respect what emerged from the stages of the synod process,” Grech said.
“What is written here is not what we all first believe must enter this document. This is what was said by people,” Hollerich said. “And we have to be faithful to the mission we have received.”
The cardinal said the synod does “not speak about the Church’s teaching — that is not our task and not our mission — we just welcome everybody who wants to walk with us.”
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Grech, too, said “we need the synodal Church to be a Church that can announce the Gospel, that can really pave the way so that Christ can meet humanity today. And who needs Christ? The wounded, the sinners, all of us. So don’t be amazed when we say that we want to create spaces to welcome all. And please also keep in mind that at times we are really judgmental, we rush to judge people. Let us leave the judgment to the Lord.”
Hollerich said the German Synodal Way was not taken in any way as a model for the universal synodal process.
“We speak about communion and we are at the service of communion,” he said. “I think the two — without judging what has been done in Germany — I think the two initiatives are very, very different.”
In prepared remarks at the presentation, Grech said the Instrumentum Laboris “is a text in which no one’s voice is missing: that of the holy people of God; of the pastors, who ensured ecclesial discernment with their participation; of the pope, who always accompanied us, supported us, encouraged us to go forward.”
“That is why,” he continued, “I like to conclude that the Instrumentum Laboris is not a document of the Holy See, it is not a document of the Holy See but of the whole Church. It is not a document written on the desk. It is a document in which everyone is a co-author, each for the part he is called to play in the Church, in docility to the Spirit.”
Hannah Brockhaus is Catholic News Agency's senior Rome correspondent. She grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, and has a degree in English from Truman State University in Missouri.