Four criteria to interpret the Amazon synod

The Amazonian periphery 'expresses the mystery of God who lives in the Church and opens it to newness'
Four criteria to interpret the Amazon synod

Gregorio Mirabal, general coordinator of Indigenous Organisations of the Amazon River Basin, at the Vatican synod. (AFP photo)

The ongoing Synod of Bishops for the Amazon has been called to be an occasion for “conversion.”

An article by influential Catholic journal La Civilta Cattolica says that ecclesial events need to be reflected upon and a historical reading made to perceive how God breaks into history even in contradictory conditions and to experience this action powerfully in the present ecclesial moment.

“A wise reading of the signs of the time confirms that the call to conversion often comes from the ‘peripheries,’ including geographical ones. In this case it may come from the peoples of the Amazon. In the Church we are living at a true kairos, that is, a favorable time of the Spirit: the Church is called to listen to its voice and to assume the commitment to conversion,” the article states.

“The face of the Amazonian periphery — immense and majestic in its territorial expanse — expresses in a certain way the mystery of God who lives in the Church and opens it to newness.

“[Pope] Francis, in his discernment as universal pastor of the Church and as a moral leader with a global impact, speaks to us of a process in which the periphery illuminates the center without pretending to take its place, but contributing to transforming, purifying and renewing it. That is to say, the periphery contributes to the conversion of this center, which has lost in a certain sense some of its capacity to listen and be amazed at the ever new and renewed voice of the Spirit.

“And the periphery can contribute to the transformation of the center to the extent that it does not lose its identity. It is from that marginal existence that Christ made his way and continues to do so today in our world with all its tensions and contrasts in order to redeem it.”

To read the full article in La Civilta Cattolica click here

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