Encuentros: Learning from 50 years of synodal experience — if we've been paying attention
"Catholics in the United States have been engaged for 50 years in groundbreaking processes of synodal discernment, dialogue and decision-making," writes Hosffman Ospino in a commentary for NCR. "Some readers may ask: How is this possible? Isn't synodality a novelty, a trend distinctive of Pope Francis' pontificate? How come I never heard of this in my parish, diocese, Catholic school, seminary or college?"
If you asked any of these or similar questions, chances are that you are unaware of some of the most exciting — and yes, synodal — conversations about ecclesial life, mission and evangelization among Hispanic Catholics, who constitute nearly 45% of the Catholic population in the U.S.
"Lack of awareness about the National Encuentros of Hispanic/Latino Ministry (aka 'Encuentros'), and the processes of ecclesial discernment and collaboration at their core, remains a major gap in ministerial formation as well as in our shared understanding of what it means to be American Catholics," Ospino says.
Read more of this commentary here.
Keep up with all of NCR's coverage of the synod on synodality here. And all of NCR's stories on the V Encuentro can be found here.
NCR has put together a map of links to U.S. archdioceses and dioceses with plans for the synod. If your diocesan synod plan is not on this map, please email the link to firstname.lastname@example.org to be included.
UN climate chief honored by Hilary Clinton, Georgetown for advancing women's rights
Patricia Espinosa, head of the United Nations' top climate change agency, was among five honorees recognized Dec. 6 by Georgetown University and Hillary Clinton for their leadership and work in advancing women's rights around the globe.
Espinosa has "reminded us that climate change or any other challenge of humanity, cannot be addressed if we leave half of the population of the world behind," Melanne Verveer, executive director of the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security, said at the ceremony.
The institute presented its 2021 Hillary Rodham Clinton Awards to Espinosa, executive secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, and four other women whose work included expanding legal services for women in China, opposing child marriage in Africa, and advancing freedoms and education for women in Afghanistan.
Clergy abuse survivor Phil Saviano chose a funeral Mass at the same church where he was abused as a boy, bringing together his abuse and Catholicism in a demanding, potentially fruitful way, writes Terence McKiernan.
ICYMI: Pope Francis has given formal approval to a series of updates and modifications that have been made over the years to the norms regarding clerical sexual abuse and other crimes.
ICYMI: With more people vaccinated against COVID-19, Catholics across the country are once again gathering to honor the Virgin of Guadalupe, who has been a source of hope for many Latinos throughout the pandemic.
ICYMI: Mexico's bishops expressed disappointment with their government's willingness to go along with a plan known as Remain in Mexico, in which people seeking asylum in the United States wait in dangerous border cities as their cases are heard in U.S. courts.
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