Call for White Papers - The Peoples Synod

An invitation

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

“new covenant”.


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

grass roots.


How to submit your paper:


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.