And yet it advances: more “pastoral responsibilities” for women in the Church, the invitation to “continue investigating” the possibility of female diaconate and the issue “that must be taken up again” about whether the obligation of celibacy for priests is necessary in the Catholic Church, in addition to “questions relating to gender identity and sexual orientation ” that raise “new questions” that must be answered “without giving in to simplifying judgments that harm people and the Body of the Church.”
These are just some of the issues still “open” approved on Saturday night by the Synod of Bishops of the Catholic Churchthe points that have attracted the greatest number (a few dozen) of negative votes, but which have been approved with a majority of more than two-thirds like the entire final report.
It was almost 9:00 p.m. at night when Pope Francis spoke in the Nervi Room, at the end of the first session that began on October 4, to “give heartfelt thanks to everyone.” Shortly before, he had posed for a photograph with the mothers synodswomen who had the right to vote for the first time since Paul VI instituted the Synod: They were 54 out of 365.
Nothing has been decided yet, but to ease tensions between conservatives and progressives, Francis has divided the assembly into two parts, with the second part meeting in a year.
Meanwhile, the approved text shows the face of “a Church on the way out, which creates spaces for everyone, without excluding anyonebecause this is the approach of Jesus,” says Cardinal Mario Grech, general secretary of the Synod.