After extensive discussion about Querida Amazonia, the strategy team and advisors of Catholic Church Reform Int’l have moved from passionate disappointment in Pope Francis to a realization that it not his style to make a papal decree about such critical matters as married priesthood and the role of women. The church he is advocating is a synodal church, i.e. one that walks together.
“I think the pope is looking for a deeper change,” said Fr. Joe Healey, our associate in Nigeria. “He wants us to move away from that monarchical model and engage the whole church in the process of discernment on issues like bringing back the female diaconate. You can't achieve synodality if you continually look to the pope to make the tough calls.
Recognizing the bishops' inability to credibly evaluate their own performance, Cardinal Blase Cupich and others representing the hierarchy of the Church are urging fellow bishops to accept leadership from lay people to make this evaluation credible. Catholic Church Reform Int'l (CCRI) believes the summit called for 21-24 February 2019 in Rome by Pope Francis with the heads of all the bishops conferences represents an opportunity which should not be missed: not only to assure that universal safeguards will be put in place, but also to provide for an ongoing role for lay leadership in the Church.