As Roman Catholic bishops from across the world gather at their 16th synod Wednesday, the national press has already begun to forecast that this summit will be the most turbulent and controversy-riddled since it began 58 years ago.
“[Pope] Francis’ desire for the church to discuss the concerns of the faithful, even the most sensitive of topics, will culminate at the Vatican in an assembly … that will allow for the first time, lay people, including women, to attend and vote,” The New York Times reported Tuesday.
The fact that none of the debates and votes have any impact on church policy or dogma notwithstanding, the report noted that the issues under discussion are sure to be controversial: “priestly celibacy, married priests, the blessing of gay couples, the extension of sacraments to the divorced and the ordination of female deacons.”
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