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Synod 21-23

In October 2021, His Holiness Pope Francis opened a worldwide synod process.

In the language of the Church, a synod is an assembly, principally of bishops, that gathers under the guidance of the Holy Spirit to discuss and decide on matters in the Church’s life and mission. The theme for the synod underway is “For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation, and Mission.” This synod is also unique because the Holy Father has summoned the whole Church to participate in a three-year process, culminating with an assembly of bishops in Rome in 2023.

The intention of this process is “to inspire people to dream about the Church we are called to be, to make hopes flourish, to stimulate trust, to bind up wounds, to weave new and deeper relationships, to learn from one another, to build bridges, to enlighten minds, warm hearts and restore strength to our hands for our common mission.”

Archbishop José Gomez invites the Church in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles to walk together in this synod process of prayer, reflection, and dialogue.

Here at Visitation we are implementing this processing by holding several “listening sessions” that will allow for a cross-section of our parish population to participate over the coming weeks. The schedule of sessions is below (Please RSVP to the Facilitator or call Jessica in the Parish Office at 310-216-1145):


Tues., March 29 at 7:00pm (via Zoom) – Facilitator: Guylaine Brosmer, email.


Wed., April 6 at 7:00pm in O’Grady Center – Facilitator: Alan Engler, email.


Sat., April 9 at 2:00pm in O’Grady Center – Facilitator: Barbara Berg, email.


The discussion topics appear below for your review BEFORE attending a session. If you wish to share your input without attending a session, we welcome email responses to the discussion topics as well (please send your response to this email address with “Synod Response” as the subject).


Discussion Topic I: Journeying Together as a Church


“Journeying together” may mean:

  • Listening to others on the journey and speaking on what matters to us about our parish/community and the Catholic Church

  • Celebrating beautiful and meaningful liturgy (Mass and the sacraments)

  • Going on mission, empowered and equipped to proclaim the Gospel

  • Dialoguing with diverse members of our community and Christians of other traditions

  • Discerning and deciding, through participation in consultative processes

  • Growing in synodality through formation in walking together


Questions for discussion:

  1. How have we “journeyed together” as a parish in recent years?

  2. Give concrete examples of fruitful experiences, as well as examples of what hindered our journey.

  3. Please share positive experiences and bring to light challenging and negative experiences.


Discussion Topic 2: Journeying Together in the Future

  1. How might the Holy Spirit be inviting our Church to “journey

together” more fully in the coming years?

  1. What are your hopes for the Church to live in deeper unity,

to promote participation, and to proclaim the Gospel?

  1. Please give concrete examples.


During this discussion as you think of possibilities for the future, perhaps pay attention to the ideas that give you clarity, enthusiasm, peace and hope.

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