Come to Dallas and participate in a PEOPLES SYNOD! Bring your stories
of the Spirit at work in your communities. Listen to the stories of others. Develop
a sense of mission and practice a way of sharing that empowers you to go back
home and engage your communities to be church in a new way, as envisioned and
preached by Christ as the reign of God.
In Dallas see how Christ’s “new covenant” – that loving one another is the
source and measure of “all the law and the prophets” – provides a path toward the
unity for which Jesus prayed. Unity comes naturally if loving one another is itself
more important than the particulars of a tradition. This priority is a pillar of the
If the discipline of each community assures that its laws and rituals are
rooted in – and ultimately the servant of -- love for one another, then different
communities are joined together not simply by the common principle of loving one
another but by because that principle is the master and not the servant of each
community’s traditional norms and practices.
Each community can respect the traditions of another community, because
it will know that traditional norms and practices are held accountable to love and
justice. Each community can have its own process for making sure that, in those
situations where it makes a difference, love and justice prevail over the “objective
criteria” that drive traditional norms and practices.
The American Catholic Council hereby issues a call for papers that can be used
by participants in the Peoples Synod to inspire and challenge them as they listen to one
another and seek guidance in considering how to further the “new covenant” from the
The call for papers is in two parts. First, submit an informal summary of a
proposed paper, perhaps 500 or 1000 words, by July 2018. These summaries will serve
as “white papers” to be reviewed by participants in preparation for the Peoples Synod in
October 2018. Papers based on these summaries should be submitted by July 2019 for
review, presentation and publication in a symposium in October 2019 reflecting upon
the Peoples Synod.
This initiative on behalf of a synodal style of being church is sponsored by the
American Catholic Council for the particular purpose of considering how to grow a
culture of discernment within the People of God. The premise of this initiative is the
Gospel, the “new covenant” that our love for one another is what fulfills the law and
brings the reign of God.