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  • Writer's pictureDavid Carlson

December 16, 2023: As a community, we have an opportunity to continue to take part in the Synod

Saturday, December 16, 2023

Saturday, December 16, 2023: As a community, we have an opportunity to continue to take part in the Synod process.


Christmas Concerts with our friend Doug Harmon and his Son:

Sunday, December 17th at 3:00PM

Location: St. Vincent's Church

# 1 St. Vincent Drive, San Rafael, CA 94903:

Come enjoy this hour and 15 minute concert of wonderful Christmas Music - great for the whole family

Donations accepted.

CD's on sale featuring all our favorites with Doug and Dana Couey

As a community, we have an opportunity to continue to take part in the Synod process.

If anyone would like to meet (perhaps you're already meeting about the Synod in your own group) please let me know. -

David Carlson

(707) 293-7159

Read all about it here:


Pope Francis has presented us with an extraordinary opportunity to speak out about the kind of Church we’d like to see today. It is our belief that his invitation to us to gather in small groups and share our stories offers far more hope for Church reform than even Vatican II back in the 60s. Pope Francis wants to hear from practicing Catholics, of course.

But even more, he wants to hear from those who are no longer part of the institutional Church, from other denominations, from men and women young and old. He wants to hear stories of how people have been hurt and what drove some away along with suggestions for how the situation(s) could have been better handled by the Church.

We encourage you to join a synod offered by your bishop, pastor, or Small Christian Community to discern the synthesis report that was released by the synod delegates. If none are being offered in your community, then consider starting your own.

How to begin your own synodal gathering

1. Reach out to a group of friends or members of your parish in your local community. It can be a small group, as few as 3 or 4, ideally no larger than 10 or 12 people.

2. You are encouraged to invite a broad spectrum of participants – active members in the Church, people who have dropped out, even members of other religious affiliations. If your group is larger than 10-12 persons, you might want to break into subgroups.

3. By way of preparation, we encourage you to read What Is the Synod on Synodality? – Catholic Church Reform International ( to learn what has already been completed.

4. Gather your group together for the purpose of (1) familiarizing yourselves with what the synod is and (2) preparing to submit your reflections on what you’d like to see included and/or further emphasized in the next Synod to be held in October 2024.

What reforms are needed to transform the Church into the kind of community in which you would want to be involved. You may choose to come together either in person or online via Zoom.

5. Always open with a prayer, allowing time for silent reflection.

6. Ask someone to be the scribe to summarize in writing the stories shared and the recommendations of how the situation could have been better handled by the Church.

7. After introductions, you might invite them to share one facet of Catholicism so meaningful to them that they would want to preserve that, no matter what. Next, ask if they have ever been hurt in their life in the Church. Allow time for silent reflection before responding.

8. As your gatherings continue, welcome anyone who wishes to share his/her own personal real-life experience of life in the Church; listen to everyone with equal attentiveness.

9. Invite them to share their views of these experiences and, if they were not dealt with as Jesus would have done, offer solutions to how the situation could have been better handled. In this way, you’re laying the groundwork for the Church you’d like to see in the future.

10. Set up a regular meeting schedule for your group.

11. At the appropriate time, you’ll be invited to send a compilation of your responses and comments to: where we will gather all the responses and forward them to the Synod Office in Rome.

12. Feel free to continue your gatherings on into the future.

We invite you to join a CCRI online gathering: Plrase click on this link for more information:

The very best experience is participating in a small gathering of your own. If you are unable to join or start a synod in your own region, we’ll post a central calendar offering a series of ongoing online gatherings to accommodate the various time zones globally. You will be invited to register for the one that best fits your schedule.

Feel free to pass this information onto to your contacts both in and out of the Church and invite them to join us, to share their stories of life in the Catholic Church, and to become involved in preparing for the next phase of the Synod to be held in Rome in October 2024.

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