The pope will have the last word: Francis to write document following Synod

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The Vatican’s second most powerful figure said Wednesday that Pope Francis will pen a document following the recently concluded Synod of Bishops on the family, something that until now no Vatican official had confirmed.

Speaking to the ANSA news agency, Italian Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s Secretary of State, said the pontiff will write an apostolic exhortation on the family in the upcoming months.

“[When] I don’t know, but I don’t think it will take too long,” ANSA quotes Parolin as saying. “After all, it’s best to strike while the iron’s still hot.”

As the contentious synod came to a close last week, it wasn’t clear if Francis would write his own document, perhaps drawing from the suggestions bishops presented to him in their summary. This has generally been the practice in past synods.

The bishops’ document was addressed to the pontiff and it was designed to be the result of not only the three weeks of the meeting, but the summary of a longer process that began in 2013 when Francis called on Catholics around the world to answer a questionnaire about the challenges facing families.

In their final summary, called a relatio, the bishops asked Francis to weigh in on topics raised during the synod.

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