My comments first: When we look at what has happened to mainline Protestant Churches who have become liberal, post-Christian Churches, we see it happened in the so-called general assemblies where the Word of God as they would understand it was put up to a vote or a referendum. This allowed them to change the doctrines of the Church on many areas. Think Episcopal, Methodist and Presbyterians and also Lutherans. Think female ordination, condoning of homosexual acts and marriage and doing away with natural law as a basis for sexual morality.
Is this where Pope Francis has brought the Catholic Church with this recent synod of bishops? Or is he doing to the Catholic Church what religious orders, such as his own Jesuits did to their religious orders in the 1960's and 70's which has led to their decline and fall? Religious orders, especially women's religious orders, were very proud of the processes they used to involved their members to change their orders. The process was deemed beautiful regardless of what it produced including the mess that now has led to their demise.
Is this what Pope Francis has in mind for the Catholic Church? Pray, pray, pray that it isn't 1960's again and if so, pray, pray, pray that we go back to the future as a Church!
Crux has a brief article that shows the angst of sober prelates such as Archbishop Charles Chaput and Bishop Thomas Tobin:
Bishop Thomas Tobin of Providence, Rhode Island has called on Catholics to “relax” following the tumultuous synod on the family, but nonetheless expressed concern over how bishops, cardinals, and even the pope conducted themselves earlier this month.
“Have we learned that it’s probably not a good idea to publish half-baked minutes of candid discussions about sensitive topics, especially when we know that the secular media will hijack the preliminary discussions for their own agendas?” Tobin wrote on the Diocese of Providence website.
In a piece entitled “Random Thoughts About the Synod on the Family,” Tobin said that “it’s an enormous challenge to maintain pristine doctrinal purity while at the same time respond to the experiential, personal, and difficult needs of married couples and families.”
He argued against what he called the pope’s suggestion that the Church “accommodate the needs of the age.” If that happens, he wrote, “the Church risks the danger of losing its courageous, counter-cultural, prophetic voice, a voice that the world needs to hear.”
“Pope Francis is fond of ‘creating a mess.’ Mission accomplished,” Tobin wrote.
He expressed support for Cardinal Raymond Burke, a favorite of the Catholic right who is expected to be demoted next month. Tobin called Burke “a principled, articulate and fearless spokesman for the teachings of the Church.”
“The concept of having a representative body of the Church voting on doctrinal applications and pastoral solutions strikes me as being rather Protestant,” he wrote.
Tobin’s comments came a day after Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput, a leading conservative voice in the US hierarchy, says he was “very disturbed” by the debate over Church teachings on gays and remarried Catholics at this month’s Vatican summit, saying it sent a confusing message and “confusion is of the devil.”
Chaput is expected to host Pope Francis in Philadelphia next September for a global World Meeting of Families, and his criticisms tracked complaints by other conservatives who were upset with Francis for encouraging a freewheeling discussion among the 190 cardinals and bishops at the Vatican’s two-week Synod on the Family.
The 70-year-old archbishop, who was not part of the Rome summit, made his remarks in response to a question after a lecture event sponsored by the journal First Things.
“I was very disturbed by what happened” at the synod, Chaput said. “I think confusion is of the devil, and I think the public image that came across was one of confusion.”
Still, he said there was some value in the synod.
“We also need to thank God for the gift of this present, difficult moment,” Chaput said. “Because conflict always does two things: It purifies the church, and it clarifies the character of the enemies who hate her.”
Material from the Religion News Service was used in this report.