“How are the sisters, my mother?”
– Your Holiness, we are afraid of the synod.
– What’s happening ? Do you want to send a nun to the synod?
– No, she told me, we are afraid that he will change our doctrine. »
This astonishing dialogue, recounted by Francis himself, on the plane which brought him back from Mongolia to Rome, took place a few months ago, between the pope and the mother superior of a Carmelite nun. The nun summed up in a few words the fears that sometimes hover, in Rome and elsewhere, less than a month before the opening of the Plenary Assembly of the synod, scheduled for October 4.
The concern is all the greater as some in Rome have difficulty grasping the contours of this great reflection on the future of the Catholic Church, presented over the weeks by its initiators, including Francis himself. , as a spiritual process during which “the Holy Spirit will be the protagonist”. At the same time eliminating any political reading of the process.
“It must succeed,” comments a Roman source favorable to Francis, not hiding his concern. Otherwise, it will be a disaster.” But how to define the “success” of a synod which will be followed, a year later, by a new assembly? “The criterion for success will be to define what we are going to do with the second session, in a year,” our observer comments precisely. Who clearly endorses, like many, a political angle. “In a war, the first attack is made to test the adversary. In October, we will see who is strong and who is not. Then the war is won afterwards, during the second battle. »
The same continues: “If we want to demonstrate the internal capacity of the Catholic Church to discuss subjects on which its faithful sometimes disagree, that will be fine. But this cannot be enough to ensure the success of the synod”.