Synods on The Family

What are the Synods on the Family?

In 2013, Pope Francis announced that two Synods would take place on topics related to the family and evangelization. The first, an Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, took place in October 2014. The second, an Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, will take place in October 2015.

When is the Synod?

The XIV Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the Family will be held October 4–25 in Vatican City.

What is the Purpose of the Synod?

The theme of this year's Synod is "The vocation and mission of the family in the Church and in the contemporary world." And its purpose is to continue the work of last year's Extraordinary General Assembly by "reflect(ing) further on the points discussed as to formulate appropriate pastoral guidelines" for the care of persons and families. (Instumentum Laboris, III Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops.)

USCCB site on the Synods

Documents released in advance of this year's Synod:

December 2014: Lineamenta, "The Vocation and Mission of the Family in the Church and Contemporary World." This contained the final report, Relatio Synodi, from the Extraordinary Synod of 2014.

June 2015: Instumentum Laboris, Contained the Relatio Synodi as well as responses to the questions posed in Lineamenta and serves to "illustrate the continuity between the two Assembles."

World Meeting of Families

What is the World Meeting of Families?

The World Meeting of Families was created by Saint John Paul II in 1992, and the first meeting was held in Rome in 1994. The international meetings are held every three years and are sponsored by the Holy See's Pontifical Council for the Family. The event is the largest gathering of Catholic families in the world. Attendees are able to participate in various activities and are encouraged to share their thoughts on the role of the Christian family in modern society.

When is the Meeting?

This year's meeting will be held in the United States for the first time, and will include a visit from Pope Francis. The meeting is slated for September 22–27, 2015, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

What is the Topic of This Year's Meeting?

Each meeting has a particular theme. This year's theme is "Love Is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive."

Links to Resources

Official website of this year's meeting

USCCB site page on this year's meeting