Upside Down, Down Under

News: Video Reports
by Hunter Bradford  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  September 29, 2021   

Plenary Assembly begins Oct. 3

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TRANSCRIPT

The Australian Catholic Bishops' Conference will hold the first meeting in the controversial Plenary Assembly this Sunday. Australian Catholics will congregate online and in person to listen to each other and the Spirit.

Church Militant's Hunter Bradford exposes the assembly's lack of true Catholicism. 

Synodality has made its way to the already-struggling Australian Church, and faithful Catholics are rightfully concerned.

Abp. Timothy Costelloe, Plenary Council president: "What do you think God is asking of us in Australia at this time?"

Pope Francis claims synodality is marked by "mutual listening and a pastoral attitude," but many wonder if Church leaders, including those in Australia, are listening to the right people. 

Australian bishops appointed Lana Turvey-Collins to be national facilitator for the Plenary Council. Turvey-Collins, however, promotes same-sex "marriage."  

She reportedly peppered her social media accounts with rainbow flag images in 2017, removing them only after the country's bishops appointed her facilitator.
 
The Assembly's website has a word cloud representing responses people gave to a survey. The agenda includes, "ordination of women," "Communion for all," "modernizing Church teaching" and "support for same-sex marriage."

Meanwhile, the faithful are left stranded. Church Militant recently received an email from one of those faithful. 

Emailer: "Here in Victoria, Australia, we have been in lockdown for months now. Our churches are locked. We receive no sacraments, no confession and no contact with the priests. And thousands of us feel abandoned by the Church."

Many suspect the Plenary Assembly will be used to facilitate more radical changes in the Church. 

Archbishop Tim Costelloe, Plenary Council president, used cryptic language in his introduction of the Assembly that some call weaponized and ambiguous.

Abp. Costelloe: "Sometimes when we listen really carefully, we hear things that surprise us or even unsettle us. We might have some strongly held views challenged or even turned upside down."

Another bellwether hierarch is Paramatta's bishop, Vincent Long. Bishop Long wrote in a 2017 pastoral letter, the question of gay "marriage" "should not be a matter of a simple answer — yes or no." Instead, he described a vote on so-called gay marriage as "an opportunity to listen to what the Spirit is saying through the signs of the times."

Whatever happens as the result of the Assembly will be set in stone. The Assembly's website states, "The decisions that are made at the Council become binding for the Catholic Church in Australia." 

Culture is always downstream of the Church. The world goes as the Church does. So as long as the Church continues down this path of "synodality," She will bring down culture with Her. 

Towards the end of the Plenary Assembly, Vatican hierarchs will begin preparations for the 2023 Synod in Rome. Pope Francis has chosen the topic to be "synodality."

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