From the Margins to the Center

An Educational Series for LGBTQ Catholics & Allies about Engaging the Synod on Synodality

Upcoming Programs

Celebrating Synodality: Synods as a Spiritual Practice (Webinar)

Sunday, January 23, 2022 | 4:00 – 5:30 pm Eastern U.S. Time

Click here to learn more


LGBTQ Spiritual Conversations for the Synod

Sunday, February 13, 2022 | 4:00 – 5:30 pm Eastern U.S. Time

Wednesday, February 23, 2022 | 7:00 – 9:00 pm Eastern U.S. Time

Click here to learn more


For more resources about the Synod on Synodality and LGBTQ issues, click here.

Celebrating Synodality: Synods as a Spiritual Practice

Brian Flanagan

Sunday, January 23, 2022 | 4:00-5:15 pm Eastern U.S. Time

Rather than just “holding” synods and councils, the church “celebrates” them. A synod is not a meeting at which there happens to be some prayer, but instead is a liturgy, a collective act of prayer and discernment. 

In this presentation, Dr. Brian Flanagan will outline the liturgical and spiritual foundations of synodality, and explore how all Catholics, especially LGBTQ Catholics and their supporters, can respond to Pope Francis’s call for full and active participation in the synod on synodality. 

We will examine the synod as an act of faith, hope, and love: faith in the Holy Spirit’s guidance of the church, hope for the future possibilities in which we might walk together as Catholics, and love for God, each other, and the wider world.

LGBTQ Spiritual Conversations for the Synod

Sunday, February 13, 2022 | 4:00-6:00 pm Eastern U.S. Time

Wednesday, February 23, 2022 | 7:00-9:00 pm Eastern U.S. Time

Robert Choiniere

New Ways Ministry will host a set of Spiritual Conversations for LGBTQ people and their supporters to to contribute to the Synod. These Spiritual Conversations are rooted in the Ignatian tradition for discerning the will of the Holy Spirit in a community of faith. In small, intimate, prayer-grounded conversations of six-eight people, a space of encounter with the others and with the Spirit is created. 

The program will be facilitated by Dr. Robert Choiniere of Fordham University, an expert on church consultation processes. He will be assisted by a team of trained discussion leaders.

The conversations include three rounds of speaking and active listening. The fruits of these conversations are captured by a note-taker and sent to the Synod Office to be included in the larger Synod process. In addition to contributing to the Synod, the Spiritual Conversation model is meant to be a time when individuals are invited to open their hearts to the faith experiences of others and become active participants in discerning the will of God for the Church.

Resources

Direct Submissions to the General Secretariat for the Synod of Bishops

Thierry Bonaventura, the Synod office’s Communications Manager, has said LGBTQ and ally Catholics, as well as others on the margins of the church, may submit comments directly to webmaster@synodresources.org.

Webinar: LGBTQ Catholics & Synodality with Dr. Robert Choiniere

This webinar explored how all Catholics, especially LGBTQ people and allies, can help make sure that every voice is heard and recorded. A recording of the 75-minute presentation and discussion can be viewed by clicking here.

Resource for Participation in Your Local Church

To connect with local synodal activities in your area or help research what activities are occurring, please visit www.synodmeetings.com.

Latest Updates on LGBTQ Issues and the Synod on Synodality

For the latest news and commentaries on the Synod as it relates to LGBTQ issues, visit New Ways Ministry’s blog, Bondings 2.0, by clicking here.

Related Articles

Dr. Hosffman Ospino in the National Catholic Reporter: A closer look at synodality and its promise for a more inclusive church

New Ways Ministry & the Synod

In December 2021, a communications official with the Vatican’s General Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops apologized to New Ways Ministry and to LGBTQ Catholics. The apology came after this official, Thierry Bonaventura, removed a link to New Ways Ministry content from the Synod office’s website. Francis DeBernardo “warmly” accepted the apology on behalf of New Ways Ministry, and the link has since been restored.

The same week of this incident, news broke that New Ways Ministry had been in correspondence with Pope Francis earlier in 2021. In his letters, the pope thanked the organization for “your neighborly work,” as well as describing co-founder Sister Jeannine Gramick as a “valiant woman.”

As part of his apology, Bonaventura said LGBTQ people could write directly to the Synod office at webmaster@synodresources.org.

New Ways Ministry encourages LGBTQ people to respond to the Vatican’s apology and correction by participating in synod consultations and sharing the journeys of their lives and their faith. The church will benefit greatly by LGBTQ involvement.

Throughout the coming months, New Ways Ministry will continue to produce educational events and materials to encourage LGBTQ participation in the synod.