Synodality – Vision

Synodality in the Life & Mission of the Church 
– The Diocesan Vision, Unfolding God’s plan  

Prayer – Adsumus, Sancte Spiritus
Prayer of invocation to the Holy Spirit for an ecclesial assembly of governance or discernment (thus synodal)

Every session of the Second Vatican Council began with the prayer Adsumus Sancte Spiritus, the first word of the Latin original meaning, “We stand before You, Holy Spirit,” which has been historically used at Councils, Synods and other Church gatherings for hundreds of years, being attributed to Saint Isidore of Seville (c. 560 – 4 April 636). As we are called to embrace this synodal path of the Synod 2021-2023, this prayer invites the Holy Spirit to operate within us so that we may be a community and a people of grace. For the Synod 2021-2023, we propose to use this simplified version, so that any group or liturgical assembly can pray more easily.

We stand before You, Holy Spirit,
as we gather together in Your name.
With You alone to guide us, make Yourself at home in our hearts;
Teach us the way we must go
and how we are to pursue it.
We are weak and sinful;
do not let us promote disorder.
Do not let ignorance lead us down the wrong path
nor partiality influence our actions.
Let us find in You our unity
so that we may journey together to eternal life
and not stray from the way of truth
and what is right.
All this we ask of You,
who are at work in every place and time,
in the communion of the Father and the Son,
forever and ever. Amen.

Title revised from Latin, to have a proper incipit, different from the Adsumus Dominus Sancte Spiritus. The Caeremoniale Episcoporum 1984ss., n. 1173, only proposes the use of the Adsumus but does not give the text. The German version Das Zeremoniale für die Bischöfe, n. 1188,  gives a German translation based on the Latin text of the Acta Synodalia of the Council, vol. I/1, p. 159.

  • The Initial Document by the International Theological Commission with Papal Approval click here 
  • Archdiocesan Website for Synodal Path Way click here or the logo for all information 
  • Here’s the easy download of the Handbook  
  • Theology Conference – Exploring the Synodal Church: Communion, Participation and Mission click here
  •  Here’s a snapshot of the Handbook 

Parish Consultation Proposal –  Road Map

Step 1: Personal Reading, prayer and Reflection – Each parishioner to go through the booklet and the material available to the best one could. Spend time in prayer & reflection. Then to note down, what it is that they would wish very much for the church to be, for the parish to be, according to the topics proposed for the discussion in the handbook or even anything else., why not?  Then one should reflect and jot down, in what ways oneself could lead, contribute and do things to achieve it and promote it. What commitment oneself would make towards it. What is your most burning desire for the Church to be! what would you yourself do about it, note it down. (Reading material and links are given above. But if you wish to have hardcopies of any of the material, just drop me a note or a message or bang on my door until it falls open!!! )

Step 2: Do some research yourself or ask someone  who knows about it (ideally an authoritative source), on your own burning issues. What is the reasoning, the theology, the teaching, the history, the tradition and what is done so far on your burning issue. Rethink on your burning issue/s. 

Here’s some helpful links & hints: (I cannot simply recommend anything else, nor anyone else other than the following) 

  • Catechism of the Catholic Church click here or ask for the book from Fr Prem (I have more than one copy available)
  • On any topic, first check what the church has said about it. Not what others say, your favourite priest says or the religious order says, but go the Vatican Website and look for yourself what the authoritative church documents say about it. Don’t simply go by hear say or what one may supposed to be saying.  Do it yourself, especially if you have no trust in the church or the priest! The worst thing and the wrong thing to do is to trust some other source or someone else.  

Step 3: Discuss with your confidants, friends and family, those with faith and none. Listen to the views and opinions of others, their perspectives. Evaluate them against your own research in to the teaching, the history and the tradition of the church. 

Step 4: Bring it to the discussion forums of the parish. I propose for you all to initiate yourselves small forums, informal discussion groups and even forums in the two churches separately prior to the General Parish Assembly.  Prepare a spoke person for the assembly on your concerns, and wishes for the church. 

You are also most welcome to send in writing via email or post or a note through the door your own reflections to Fr Prem who would pass it on to be read at the General Assembly. You can do this anonymously too, as you may wish to do for your own reasons but please, carefully following through Step 1 and 2

Step 5: Parish Assembly 13th February 2022 – after the 11am Mass – Starting by 12 noon, ending by 1.30pm 

Step 6: Summary and the feed back made known to the parish and then reporting it to the Archdiocesan Synodal Path Way Committee.  

This is simply a proposal. So please feel free to suggest your own ideas and thoughts, approaches, if you think what is proposed as the methodology  (sorry about the word) can be enhanced. 

I also invite two people who would be happy to chair the meeting together, who would also set the agenda for the meeting. 

So now, I leave it all in your hands!  

Other Resources  that may be of help and inspiration to you

  • THEOLOGY CONFERENCE, 11/12 MARCH 2022 A Theology Conference ‘Exploring the Synodal Church: Communion, Participation and Mission’ will be held at Oscott College from March 11/12, 2022 in conjunction with St Mary’s University, London. For more details/ registration please see: www.oscott.net  or Eventbrite https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/exploring-the-synodal-church-communionparticipation-and-mission-tickets-16059605813 or click on the links to take you there.
  • CAMPION HALL SYMPOSIUM 24-26 MARCH 2022 Please see the poster shown below here and  at the entrances to the church,  which gives more information about this seminar which is entitled Towards a Synodal Church: Insights and Experiences. Cardinal Grech is hoped to be the keynote speaker at this event along with other experts in the field. 
  • Preaching the Gospel in a Multifaith Society. Mission is one of the themes of the synodality process and walking together leads inevitably to the mission of the Church. Dr Rosalee Velloso Ewell, Principal of Redcliffe College, will be speaking on the theme of Mission in a multifaith and multicultural society. This will be an online meeting via Zoom to be held on Sunday February 20th from 2.30pm – 4pm. It would be great to see you there. To get the link to join the Zoom meeting, please email actabhm@gmail.com.   David BlowerACTA Birmingham


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