The Church‘s mission in the words of Pope Francis at the opening Mass of the Synod: "Do not point fingers but welcome"
In his homily at the opening of the Synod of Bishops, Pope Francis focused on three main themes: the drama of loneliness, love between man and woman, and the family, which were the focal points of the day‘s biblical readings. Speaking about loneliness, the Pope referred to "the elderly, abandoned even by their loved ones and children; widows and widowers; the many men and women left by their spouses; all those who feel alone, misunderstood and unheard; migrants and refugees fleeing from war and persecution; and those many young people who are victims of the culture of consumerism, the culture of waste, the throwaway culture." Recalling the first reading, the Pope mentioned "God’s dream for his beloved creation: to see it fulfilled in the loving union between a man and a woman, rejoicing in their shared journey, fruitful in their mutual gift of self. [...] This shows us that the goal of conjugal life is not simply to live together for life, but to love one another for life!"
As for marriage, "for God, marriage is not some adolescent utopia, but a dream without which his creatures will be doomed to solitude! Indeed, being afraid to accept this plan paralyzes the human heart. Paradoxically, people today—who often ridicule this plan—continue to be attracted and fascinated by every authentic love, by every steadfast love, by every fruitful love, by every faithful and enduring love. We see people chase after fleeting loves while dreaming of true love; they chase after carnal pleasures but desire total self-giving." In a "very difficult" social and marital context, the Church—said the Pope—"is called to live its mission in fidelity, truth and charity." In fidelity, "to defend faithful love", the "sanctity of life" and "the indissolubility of the marriage bond;" in truth "that is not changed according to fads or prevailing opinions;" and "in charity, not pointing a finger in judgment of others, but—faithful to her nature as a mother—conscious of her duty to seek out and care for wounded couples with the balm of acceptance and mercy; to be a ‘field hospital‘ with doors wide open to whoever knocks in search of help and support; even more, to reach out to others with true love, to walk with our fellow men and women who suffer, to include them and guide them to the wellspring of salvation. A Church—he concluded—that teaches authentic love, which is capable of taking loneliness away, without neglecting her mission to be a Good Samaritan to wounded humanity."
Read the homily of Pope Francis
Apertura del Sinodo dei Vescovi sulla Famiglia 2015
Relazione introduttiva al Sinodo sulla Famiglia
Conferenza stampa sulla prima sessione dei lavori del Sinodo sulla famiglia
Veglia di preghiera per il Sinodo sulla Famiglia
Santa Messa per l‘apertura del Sinodo sulla Famiglia