A listening Church

If there is one word that can offer a common thread to the Synod that has begun in the Church, it is "listening". A word on which Pope Francis has insisted a lot. 

November 13, 2021-Reading time: 2 minutes
Catholic faithful praying in a church.

In 2016 communication scholar Jim McNamara published a work entitled. Organizational listening; The Missing Essential in Public CommunicationThe conclusions of this study revealed the listening deficit in organizations. The conclusions of this study revealed the listening deficit that organizations suffer from, as they spend 95 % of their communication time and energy on talking, and only 5 % on listening. McNamara proposed a "architecture of listening". which implied a change in attitude and processes.

On October 9 and 10, the synodal journey was solemnly launched in Rome under the title For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation and Missionwhich will last until 2023. In the homily delivered on Sunday 10, Pope Francis affirmed: "The Spirit asks us to listen to the questions, concerns and hopes of every Church, every people and every nation. And also to listen to the world, to the challenges and changes that it puts before us."

The preparatory document for the Synod mentions some interesting facts. Among others, the fact that the Christian community is being called into question as a credible subject and reliable partner in social dialogue (largely as a consequence of the abuse crisis), or the desire for protagonism within the Church on the part of young people, or the request for a greater appreciation of women and spaces for participation in the mission of the Church. 

The synodal journey offers the hierarchy and all Catholics an opportunity to become better at listening, a listening that usually strengthens transparency, a sense of belonging and trust in institutions. Attentive to the Word of God and to the promptings of the Holy Spirit, this meeting can be an opportunity for the Church to be perceived anew in the world with all her saving power.

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