Ten Questions (Synodal Pathway)

 

1. How welcoming is our parish?

How do we embrace and reach out as a parish, and as individuals, to the community with us each Sunday- in person or via live-stream - as well as those who are still anxious about returning, those who seem to have fallen away, and those enquiring and coming to us as newcomers?

How welcoming do people find us?

 

2. How good are we at listening?

Our world is full of noise and opinion; full of people making their voices heard, and those who feel that they go unnoticed. Are we good listeners?

Do we feel listened to?

How do we learn to listen well - to each other, to the wider world, to God himself?

 

3. How good are we at communicating?

Do we feel able to share our thoughts and ideas openly with each other?

Are we living out our baptismal vocation, ready to speak the truth, in love, when necessary?

Does this include social media?

 

4. How well does the Church's liturgy inspire a deeper encounter with the Risen Lord?

Does the Sunday Mass bring me closer to God, and enable me to be fed by Him?

When I leave the Mass, what do I take out to the wider world?

Does my personal prayer life bring me closer to God and connect me with the Church?

When I pray, for what do I give thanks to God? - and what do I ask of Him?

 

5. How well do I understand and participate in the mission of the Church?

Do I feel that I am playing my part, and pulling my weight, in the life and mission of my parish, the diocese, and the universal Church? Or is that somebody else's job?

How do I respond to the Lord's call to witness to the Gospel?

Do I keep my life of faith to myself, or do I share it with others in word or deed?

What would help me to do that better?

 

6. How well do we engage with the wider world?

Do we engage with those around us: with our local community, with the life of our country, and our world?

Do we believe that the Church truly has something to offer the world at large? Or are we too focused on ourselves?

 

7. How good is our relationship with other Christian traditions?

What is our relationship like with our brothers and sisters in other Christian traditions?

Do we listen to each other?

What can we learn from them? - and what can they learn from us?

 

8. How well do we work as a team in our parish?

How is leadership exercised and experienced in our parish?

Are there positive ways in which we help to participate in the life and mission of the Church?

What are the fruits of this collaboration ?

What are the obstacles and challenges?

 

9. How open are we to the will of God and the guidance of the Holy Spirit?

How do we discern the direction in which the Holy Spirit is leading us rather than just following our own private enthusiasms or agendas?

Is there freedom to exercise our particular gifts in the service of the Church?

Is my local community accountable and transparent when it comes to making decisions and, if not, what would help to remedy this?

Do I support the bishops and priests in arriving at their decisions?

 

10. How well do we hand on the faith?

Are we effective in sharing and passing on the faith as individuals, as parishes, and as a diocese?

What would help us to do this better?

Can we see ways in which we might continue to work in a 'synodal' way - praying, discussing, and discerning together, not reliant on majority votes, but on a genuine consensus - a coming together of hearts and minds under the guidance of the Holy Spirit

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