BY Daniel Harkins | October 1 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

4-Pope geneal audience synod

Pope asks pilgrims to pray for extraordinary synod on the family

Holy Father also talks of the gifts of the Holy Spirit and the need to advance the Church’s unity and mission during today’s general audience

Pope Francis used his weekly general audience this morning to call for prayers for the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family, which will begin this Sunday.

Speaking to crowds gathered in St Peter’s Square, including pilgrims from Scotland, the Pope asked the faithful to pray for the two-week-long meeting.

The synod will bring together the presidents of national bishops conferences—including Archbishop Philip Tartaglia of Glasgow—the heads of Eastern Catholic churches, and Vatican officials.

A larger, ordinary meeting of the Synod will take place in 2015, as will the World Meeting of Families, due to take place in Philadelphia in September.

The Pope also spoke to the gathered pilgrims about the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

“Among these gifts are charisms, the graces which the Spirit freely bestows upon the faithful for the benefit of the whole community,” he said. “These gifts, while granted to individuals, are discovered and acknowledged within the wider ecclesial community.

“As a sign of God’s superabundant love for his children, they are rich and varied, yet each is meant to serve the building up of the Church as a communion of faith and love. The very diversity of the Spirit’s gifts invites us to share them generously for the good of all, and never to let them become a source of division.

“Today let us ask the Lord to help us recognise with gratitude this great outpouring of spiritual gifts which enables the Church to persevere in faith, to grow in grace and to be an ever more credible sign and witness of God’s infinite love.”

The Pope concluded by calling everyone to ‘consider the special gifts he or she has received, and how we choose to use those gifts to advance the Church’s unity, life and mission in the world.’




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