As part of the world-wide Synodal Process, initiated by Pope Francis, Santa Maria de la Vid Abbey held two listening sessions earlier this year. Following the format designed by the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, Br. Alexis Longoria, Oblate Christina Spahn, and Associate Pat McIntire facilitated the sessions.
A total of forty-five people — community members, associates, and Abbey Sunday liturgy attendees — gathered for one or both of the sessions held in March. In a process of prayer and small group discussion, they reflected on their experience of Church and their dreams for its future.
The sessions’ report, sent to the Archdiocese and, compiled with other reports, eventually to the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, focused especially on the following:
The need for a more welcoming spirit in parishes and Church institutions
Concern about the divisions in the Church at all levels
The inclusion of the non-ordained in positions of Church leadership and decision-making
Opening all Church ministries to all Church members
The implementation of Catholic Social Teaching
The need to update moral theology in the light of what today’s science and psychology tell us about the human person
Concern about so many young people leaving the Church which they no longer consider relevant
While the listening sessions are over, we continue to pray that the Synodal Process brings healing, renewal and hope to our Church.