VATICAN CITY, NOV. 16, 2004 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II specified the three main objectives of next year’s Synod of Bishops: to confirm the faith, renew communion among Church pastors, and promote charity.
The Pope mentioned these objectives today to the participants in the meeting of the Ordinary Council of the Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops, held in preparation for next October’s ecclesial summit whose theme is “The Eucharist, Source and Summit of the Life and Mission of the Church.”
“The next synod will offer once again a propitious occasion to confirm in the Church the adorable mystery of the Eucharist, to renew collegial and hierarchical communion, and to promote fraternal charity,” the Holy Father said in his address delivered in Italian.
Pope Paul VI in 1965 instituted the Synod of Bishops in response to requests expressed by participants in the Second Vatican Council.
The Web page of the General Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops explains: “The synod may be defined, in general terms, as an assembly of bishops which represents the Catholic episcopate and has the task to help the Pope in the governance of the universal Church by giving him its advice.”
John Paul II, recalling one of the central ideas of his pontificate, said: “May the Church, renewed in the rediscovery of the gift and mystery of the Eucharist, be able to extend its inexhaustible richness of life to those who are near and those who have fallen away, in an urgent endeavor of new evangelization.”
The outline (“lineamenta“) that serves as the basis for the preparation of the 2005 synod is posted on the Vatican Web page.