Synod update: Trying to stop defections to other churches

Synod update: Trying to stop defections to other churches October 10, 2019


Some interesting observations here, from Brazilian Bishop Wilmar Santin:

The Brazilian bishop spoke about the fact that many Catholics in the Amazon region are defecting to other churches because “we don’t manage to arrive on time to where people are, because everything is centralized in the figure of the priest.”

“We’re looking for new paths, new strategies, because the reality is new, the challenges different from the ones we had 10 years ago,” he said. “We have to change things so that not everything depends on the priest; because if not, we’re not upholding our mission, that of proclaiming the Word of God.”

“A Catholic [in the Amazon], in order to hear the Word of God, has to go to an Evangelical church. We have to change, not to compete with others, but to fulfill our mission,” he said.

The bishop also noted that in recent years, Pentecostal groups are gaining a foothold and becoming “very aggressive” against the culture of the indigenous peoples, some even forbidding them from speaking their own languages, with pastors telling locals that it comes “from the devil.”

“We cannot sacralize every indigenous thing, not can we Satanize it,” he said.

Santin relayed the experience in his territory, where a formation course for ministers of the Word was started two years ago, and now 48 men proclaim the Gospel in their native language.

“The Church must find new ways to go forward because the reality is new,” the bishop repeated. “We must change our structure a bit and be less slow. We must carry out our mission with greater efficiency.”

Read more. 

There was also this tidbit:

Paolo Ruffini, the head of the Vatican’s Dicastery for Communications, issued yet another denial regarding the allegations made by Italian journalist Eugenio Scalfari, who in a recent column claimed that two years ago, during an encounter he had with Pope Francis, the pontiff denied the divinity of Christ.

“The Holy Father never said what Scalfari wrote,” Ruffini said. “Both the quoted remarks and the free reconstruction and interpretation by Dr. Scalfari of the conversations, which go back to more than two years ago, cannot be considered a faithful account of what was said by the pope.”

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