Rome: the Holy See prepares a new synod on the Eucharist

Source: FSSPX News


While an encyclical and a doctrinal note have been announced for this summer on the theme of the Eucharist, the Vatican explains that this synod scheduled for October 2004 – comprised of bishops from throughout the world chosen by the episcopal conferences – “will enable the bishops to present a profound reflection on a theme which knows many deviations, especially on the liturgical front.” Emphasis has also been placed on the “great preoccupation” of the pope and the Roman curia with these deviations, since the Eucharist is “the focal point of the Catholic Faith”.

This meeting of October 2004 will be the 7th ordinary general assembly of the Synod of Bishops convoked by John-Paul II in his 25-year pontificate. The others dealt with the family (1980), reconciliation and penance (1983), the laity (1987), the formation of priests (1990), the consecrated life (1994) and bishops (2001).

The apostolic exhortation – a concluding document drawn up by the pope and usually published several years after the conclusion of a synod – of the most recent synodal gathering of 2001 on the bishops is expected before the end of 2003.

In addition, the apostolic exhortation of the second special assembly for Europe – which took place in 1999 – has yet to be published. Even though the Vatican affirms that this document has been completed, it notes that the pope could wait for the final draft of the European Constitution – currently being prepared at the Council of Europe and planned for release in 2004 – to publish it.

In his Wednesday audience, the pope asked Christians to make an “examination of conscience”, “to return to a liturgy ever more beautiful and dignified.” “We must purify the liturgy of any idiosyncratic flourishes, of negligent forms of expression, as well as of music and texts devoid of meaning and hardly in keeping with the grandeur of the act being celebrated”, he asserted. “To return to a more beautiful and dignified liturgy”, we propose as a solution that Rome affirm the possibility of saying the Tridentine Mass for every priest throughout the world, without any restrictions. It would be good to point the synod in this direction. Otherwise, they will risk producing yet another document which will change nothing to the face of the earth.