Draft report of Diocesan Synod is ready for review

Candy Boucher
Youths from St. Ann Parish in Long Grove pose with a cutout of Pope Francis prior to their Synod listening session earlier this year.

By Barb Arland-Fye
The Catholic Messenger

Our voices have been heard! We now have a draft report of what fills our hearts and breaks our hearts about the Catholic Church in the Diocese of Davenport. More than 13,000 comments have been collected with care from 470+ listening sessions that took place in parishes, schools and universities, coffee shops, religious communities and other places in our diocese from January through April of this year. Over 6,000 people participated in these sessions.

Read the draft report HERE. You are invited to make comments after reading the draft report of the Synod process via the web HERE, or by email at synod@diodav.org or by mail to the Diocese of Davenport, 780 W. Central Park Ave., Davenport, Iowa, 52804-1901. Please indicate the paragraph number(s) to which your comment(s) corresponds. Send comments by June 16.

Pope Francis launched the synodal process worldwide in October of last year in preparation for the Synod of the Bishops on Synodality in 2023. He invited “the whole Church on a two-year journey of reflection and sharing of the whole Church.” The word “synod” means to “journey together.”


The Vatican handbook on this process states, “As a model of transparency, the members of the drafting team as well as the process of synthesizing the feedback can be made known to all. It is strongly recommended that the synthesis be made public once it has been drafted, as a touchstone for the journey of the diocese along the path of synodality. As much as possible, opportunities can be given to the People of God to review and respond to the content of the diocesan synthesis before it is officially sent to the episcopal conference.”

Diocesan Director of Evangelization Patrick Schmadeke has been immersed in the diocesan Synod process since its implementation. He shares his observation of what has transpired. “The success of the Synod is measured by how involved people are from around the diocese. More than 100 people have contributed to planning, executing and leading the Synod. Thousands have participated in listening sessions. Now we come to this major milestone in the process. When was the last time the People of God were invited to comment on a draft document from the Church? This document is the product of the discernment of the People of God through listening sessions. Now they have the opportunity to see this document through as it is submitted to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.”

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