WE DO THIS TOGETHER: A Reflection from the Interpath Traditions Posted October 17, 2021 by admin@interfaith


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A Reflection from the Interpath Traditions
by Thomas P. Bonacci, C.P.
October 17, 2021
On October 10, 2021, Pope Francis opened the beginning of a two-year consultation inviting every Catholic on the face of the Earth to participate. This is a momentous moment in the life of the Catholic Church with serious implications for the peoples of the World. This synodal process is rooted in the ancient practice and self-understanding of the Church.
“Synod” is another word for Church, a way of being Church, taking its inspiration from Jesus who walked along the pathways of Galilee, Samaria, and Judea with his disciples. Pope Francis points out how Jesus listened to what others had to say. Catholics are considering the questions of what it means to be Church. The question is personal, seeking the actual experiences of people throughout the World. 
We might ask ourselves what it means for me to believe what I believe and be who I am? Second, what are my actual experiences? Imagine for a moment what the World would become if we shared like this with one another across the spectrum of life. We need to look for every opportunity to share with one another our experiences of faith and life. All of this begins in each person’s heart. We must learn to listen to ourselves with patience, respect, and a sense of responsibility as we seek to hear and respect others.
Pope Francis reminds us to be aware of the Spirit moving in our hearts and lives. The Spirit invites us to the very depths of our being, where we experience the presence of God. The Synodal experience begins deep in the mind, heart, and soul of every person. This interior dialogue helps us to realize the responsibilities we have in caring for others. Each person is a treasured gift to the World. We must seek the convictions often hidden behind our harsh judgments and misunderstandings. We must be honest about our actual experiences so we might learn from our past mistakes. Encouraged by our newly found wisdom, we can be grateful for the insights of others.
In preparing for the Synod, which will conclude with the assembly of Bishops in October 2023, Francis invites the people of the World to dream. As we look out into the future, what kind of Church do we want to be? This is a powerful question to ask. It takes us into the unknown, challenges our fears, and invites hope. I, for one, look forward to engaging myself and sharing with others as together we seek to bless generations not yet born. 
Finally, I hope to learn from my Ecumenical and Interfaith friends what kind of Church do they want us to be? It is our blessing to walk on Earth in the company and friendship of so many people of faith and those who walk in the ways of wisdom, peace, and understanding. 
Every time we meet another person, we have an opportunity to discover their wisdom as we open our hearts. What a blessing it is to journey together.
Thank you, Holy Community, for all the times you treasured your heart, listened to another, and blessed the World.   

As things begin to return to a new normal, we at The Interfaith Peace Project are here for you in any way that you need us. The Antioch Center is now open to fully vaccinated people on Wednesdays, from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm. We are vigilant and will adjust to any and all recommendations from the state and county. We will continue our work through Zoom as we add in person programs. If you would like to schedule an in person or Zoom program or would like a phone appointment with any of us, give us a call. You may call or email Tom at:
Tom Bonacci
[email protected]
925-787- 9279