Bogota (Agenzia Fides) - As part of a so-called “listening phase”, the Church Assembly of Latin America and the Caribbean wants to promote the exchange that "will be the leitmotif of the entire process of discernment before and during the Assembly".
This first phase has now been officially opened and is expected to last until mid-July. In his video message for the opening event, Pope Francis emphasized that the assembly should be a sign of the "Church without exclusion" (see Fides, 23/1/2021; 25/1/2021; 23/2/2021).
"We strive for the full and broad participation of all the pilgrim people of God in Latin America and the Caribbean", said Mauricio López, coordinator of the events committee for the listening phase, "so that this gathering becomes a celebration of our ecclesial identity at the service of life". "This event wants to be a true expression of a presence", continued Lopez, "which takes into account the hopes and desires of all the people who make up the Church, the people of God, especially at this moment of deep crisis". All men and women members of the Church will be able to participate. The goal is to listen carefully to the cries of the poor and of mother earth, affected in this period by the Covid-19 pandemic and all other pandemics of inequality and exclusion.
The first phase of listening provides for community initiatives and individual contributions, through an online platform, on the website of the Ecclesial Assembly.
Participants must register for identification and security reasons. You can participate in three ways: Communities or organized groups will answer the questions proposed by a questionnaire. An individual can upload his/her contribution in the personal participation form. The third form of participation consists in organizing and participating in thematic forums in which a deeper reflection on topics of particular interest and importance takes place.
Each bishops' conference has set up a national commission to encourage the participation of all believers in their respective areas of responsibility. The various Latin American pastoral networks and institutions (CLAR, Caritas, territorial ecclesiastical networks ...) will also help shape this process. Two basic documents are available on the official website of the assembly, which are intended to deepen the process of listening and explain its path and methods. (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 20/4/2021)