(i.e., a report after discussion), which summarized the discussions held in the first week of the synod.
As with most things regarding the Synod or the Church in general there are narrative reactions with people always looking for major changes in the Church and those who panic that such changes are going to happen. The truth isn’t always in the middle, although with Vatican documents the truth is usually in the muddle.
The invaluable Thomas L. McDonald posts a initial reaction on a first pass through the document Fisking the Synod “Relatio”. Well worth reading in full.
It’s a summary of the discussion as it stands. Most of it is very good. Out of 58 paragraphs, about four are awful.
Which means that all the attention (media and otherwise) will be on those four paragraphs. Unfortunately the awful paragraphs are truly awful and remove clarity in an area that is such a modern hot issue. Fr Longenecker posts regarding this I fear this is ill thought out, sentimentalist, wishy washy, secularist nonsense.
Since the “law of gradualness” has been much discussed recently along with showing up in this document it is very helpful to read The Law of Gradualness: 12 things to know and share. A couple of points he makes specifically regarding this subject and the document released.
10) Is this same understanding of the law of gradualness present in Familiaris Consortio and the Vademecum for Confessors?
It does not appear so. At least from what has been said thus far, it appears more to reflect the “gradualness of law” that was warned against in those documents, according to which a decisive break with sin is not required before receiving absolution and holy Communion, and in which a different standard of what constitutes sin would be applied to some than is applied to others.
11) Does the Relatio change Church teaching regarding the law of gradualness?
No. The Relatio is a summary what various bishops proposed in discussions. It is not a document of the Magisterium.
The document accurately reports that one group of bishops proposed this—and that others opposed it—but it does nothing to change Church teaching.
John Thavis, a reporter covering the Vatican, called it a “Pastoral earthquake” and that terminology has spread out into plenty of article. Although as we know from scripture, God is not in the Earthquake. Plus after reading John Thavis’ book “The Vatican Diaries”, I am not impressed by his analysis in general.
“Acts of the Apostasy” has some humorous analysis BREAKING! JERUSALEM COUNCIL ISSUES REPORT; CHRISTIANS BRISTLE