As we mentioned yesterday all over the world the Catechism of the Mainstream media on the Extraordinary Synod on the family is being promulgated to those people who have no idea of what is actually going on and serious Catholic voices are not liking the result as the great George Weigel commenting on one such piece put it:
Ms. Povoledo utterly misrepresented the document on which she was putatively reporting. It was not issued by “a meeting” or by “the Vatican.” It was not an authoritative document in any sense; it was an interim report on themes that had been raised in the previous ten days of debate and discussion at the synod. It had absolutely no legislative weight — synod documents are consultative, not legislative — and I am told by those who were there that various formulations in the report were seriously criticized in the synod debates. Moreover, the interim report will be chewed over in the ten synod language-based discussion groups — where, one suspects, further criticisms will be aired — before any final report is issued. To turn this kind of interim report into the virtual equivalent of a papal encyclical is ludicrous on its face.
The 2014 synod is an agenda-setting exercise that was intended by Pope Francis to help prepare the work of the 2015 Synod on the Family. The pope knows full well that marriage and the family are in crisis throughout the world. In his own remarks before the synod, he said that he hoped the synod would lift up the beauty of Christian marriage and Christian family life in a world too dominated by what he’s often called a “throwaway culture,” the throwaways all too frequently including spouses and children. That some bishops, theologians, and bishop-theologians from dying local churches in Europe have tried to use the synod to instruct the entire Catholic Church on appropriate pastoral solutions to difficult and tangled human situations will strike some as cheeky, and others as just bizarre. But whatever those synod fathers and advisers thought they were doing, what they effectively have done is to contribute to the false sense that this, at last, is the moment of the Great Catholic Cave-In.
That voices like Weigel are saying this is important but the real news out of Rome isn’t people like him seeing the media spin. The news is the people in charge at the Synod might finally be figuring out that the media or someone else is trying to game them:
The Vatican press briefing today featured a big effort from the Synod to walk back some of the analysis that took place on the release of the Relatio yesterday. Cardinal Wilfrid Fox Napier of Durban, South Africa expressed dismay over the release of the document, the phrasing used within it, and especially the media reaction to it. At one point during the briefing, the prelate lamented that the Catholic Church is now in a potentially “irredeemable” position. When the final document comes out and it doesn’t match the media’s take on the draft, it will look like “damage control” rather than a positive step forward in bolstering family life.
I’m glad to hear that someone is finally figuring it out. After all if NGO’s fight to keep their gravy train do you think the enemy is going to sit back while the church goes after lost or forgotten sous and let them snatch away back without a fight?