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 With the participation of more than 350 people from the Catholic Church, belonging to different instances and networks from all over the country, the first assembly of the so-called Lay Synod of Chile was held in Santiago. The event took place in Santiago and more than 350 people committed to the Catholic Church participated. The organizers informed that in the next few months the final document of this assembly will be released, which will be used for pastoral work.

Final declaration

Statement to the members, auditors and observers of the 2018 Synod of Bishops on Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment

    Over the past two years, we have been involved in an international research project to study and engage best practices in student and young adult apostolates.[1] We have collected good practices and models of small faith communities[2] of, for, and by Catholic university students from over a dozen countries. Some of these are highlighted in a book, God’s Quad: Small Faith Communities on Campus and Beyond (Orbis Books, 2018). Along with the book, we have held “listening sessions,” most recently in Nairobi, New York, and Rome. Our goal is to engage more voices of young people in the process of the Synod. From these events and our research, six key messages surface.

As global communities representing tens of thousands of Catholic students, intellectuals, and professionals, IMCS and ICMICA* wish to express our support for Pope Francis and his efforts to address the global crisis of sexual abuse and to bring about much needed reforms of ecclesial structures.

Old wine in old wineskins

1- "We are not living in an era of change but experiencing the change of an era", thus Pope Francis to the Italian bishops. A deep reaching change is taking place. This we have to master. For this, small reforms are not enough. Courage is required. He, the Pope, has this. Within five years he has changed the Roman Catholic Church. Structures are being renewed. A decentralisation is under way. The Pope is convinced that the Holy Spirit is not at work onlv in Rome. In his inaugural speech "Evangelii Gaudium" he quoted regional bishop-conferences 40 times. When the four "dubia cardinals" waited for an answer to their letter about "Amoris Laetitia", he adapted a pastoral letter of the Argentine bishops and raised this to the rank of a genuine teaching. He gave this local letter the authority of a "magisterium authenticum".

Right to dissent and the obligation of obedience

                In a secular society – in which we have been living in the most part of Europe for at least two hundred years – it can be found as obvious that there is no consensus in several instances and that one citizen’s opinion may differ from that of another one or from the position of a supreme power or body.  It is an everyday experience to meet conflicting views.  However, once a pious citizen crosses the threshold of a church, he or she might think that the possibility and the right to be dissented have ceased in the altar.

Another Church possible in the global era and plural era. (Javier Elzo). His new book is based on an accurate reflection "You cannot live faith today as lived and understood by our previous generations of Christians during the long centuries of the era of Christianity, in whose rales we are." Although it may seem a pessimistic observation, Elzo understands it as an opportunity.

We must think and construct Church reform culturally, but above all begin to experiment. Our local realities feel very challenged, both on the theological and pastoral front, to respond to the pressing request of Pope Francis to rethink the forms of the Church and above all to look for new paths for the Christian proclamation. The reform is very necessary today, because it is fundamental to re-establish dialogue with a radically different world from the past, and it is a necessity to renew not only the languages ​​but also the structures and ministries of our Church. Meic will go on this path trying to stimulate and involve other associative realities, because only together it is possible to build contents and experiences that foster authentic ecclesial renewal.

What is my proposal? The announcement of the Gospel is provocative when it comes from a community that lives the Gospel ... What Pope Francis says: Christians have the duty to announce the Gospel without excluding anyone, not to impose a new obligation, but as he who shares a jewel, indicates a beautiful horizon, offers a desirable banquet. The Church does not grow by proselytizing, but by attraction.