Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Taking that survey? Deadlines loom!

A few weeks ago, Pope Francis surprised pretty much everybody when he announced an "Extraordinary" synod of bishops, to discuss proclaiming the Gospel effectively in the face of all the challenges facing family life. In view of this, the Vatican drew up a kind of survey instrument which is impressive for the high level of familiarity with Church documents and language. Really, this "survey" is not a survey at all, but a way for the bishops themselves to organize the information the synod will need to do its work.

In Boston, Harrisburg, and other dioceses, the priests or council will take it up. But many of the bishops are inviting the faithful to respond to it, too, and soon. In Salt Lake City, the questionnaire is being handed out at Mass (great idea!).

In some dioceses, the survey was digitized, so it can be answered online. As easy as that makes things, it also opens the door to agenda-driven "survey spam." I think the Archdiocese of Chicago is pursuing a good road, even if it puts a couple of extra steps in the way. The Vatican survey/questionnaire is available online, but needs to be downloaded to be responded to (and then mailed or emailed in).  Cardinal George has pledged to read each and every response. (Personally, I think that is heroic.) The Harrisburg (PA) diocese very helpfully included a link to the Synod "Preparatory Document," to be read before any  questions are tackled.  (Scroll down to the bottom of the post for a list of links to diocese's official survey sites.) The bishops' input is due in Washington (USCCB headquarters) by the end of the year, so there's not much time for you to have your say.

There are also a few agenda-driven groups that are circulating "surveys" of their own. Since those who wish to be heard should also be willing to listen, I would suggest that informed Catholics also respond to these, aware that even the phrasing of the questions is extremely "leading" in the direction of the radical change these groups would like to see imposed:

Here are some of the official US diocesan survey sites that I am aware of; please add others in the comments. (Dioceses and Bishops Conferences only! I will verify them all before posting the comment.)

Archdiocese of Milwaukee
Archdiocese of Baltimore
Archdiocese of Chicago  (download and mail/email in)
Archdiocese of New Orleans (download and mail/email in)
Archdiocese of Cincinnati (Deadline: Dec. 2)
Archdiocese of Kansas City
Diocese of Austin (Deadline: Dec. 9)
Diocese of Charlotte
Diocese of Juneau

Diocese of Davenport (Deadline: Dec. 1)
Diocese of St. Petersburg
Diocese of Harrisburg
Diocese of Scranton
Diocese of Oakland
Diocese of Rapid City
Diocese of Sioux City
Diocese of Raleigh
Diocese of Grand Rapids (Deadline: Dec. 13)
Diocese of Pittsburgh (Deadline: Dec. 6)
Diocese of Charleston (Deadline: Dec. 16; offers an "express" version)
Diocese of Tucson (Deadline passed; was Nov. 24)


Angela Sealana said...

My bosses are taking the survey; apparently our diocese asked several representatives in ministry to respond to this survey. Personally, I think that will skew the results, but I will leave those decisions up to the Holy Spirit. :-\ :-)

plato said...

Did you take the survey Sister? I can't because I am on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. My diocese, the Diocese of Biloxi, did not put it online. :( There is absolutely no mention of it anywhere on their website.

I guess I can go to the agenda driven websites that you mentioned and answer some there ... if they will even take the answers that do not coincide with their agenda... but I do not understand how that will even get to the Vatican since the Vatican wants the bishops answers...

Thank You for the link to the New Orleans Archdiocese,though. I DID send that link to a few friends.

I think most Catholics in the US are/were poorly catechized and most formal catechesis ends in childhood leaving most adults with a child's concept of their faith. I think that this is true even for those in Catholic Schools. This saddens me.

My Catholic high school religion classes consisted of 'social justice' sort of things on a superficial level; collages, listening to Beatles songs and 'Kumbayah" type music, etc.

We have such a RICH, deep and abiding faith but I believe that 99% of Catholics are unaware of it. I grew up thinking that our faith was just one of many.

I thought for many years that I wanted to be a nun(sister), Sr. of Mercy. In hanging around the sisters from high school days( I graduated in '73) through my mid-twenties I even learned a certain disrespect for the Pope! :( I thank God now that I did NOT become one of them. They are part of the LCWR. I have visited their websites and read many of their blogs and messages and I am so disappointed in the path that the order seems to have gone down... especially because I LOVE so many of them and they ARE GOOD PEOPLE. They are a part of the fabric of my life! But, in general, they seem to be very deluded having no qualms about supporting same sex marriage, sex outside of marriage, women's ordination, liberation theology, and even being 'pro-choice' in many instances. I think this comes from the initial misinterpretation of Vatican II and believing in 'the spirit of Vatican II' as opposed to( and not WITH) the Documents of Vatican II. And that is STILL what they TRULY believe Vatican II to be and to say and to mean. It seems to me that they have lost their Catholic identity.
:( 'But for the grace of God, there go I'! It is only in the last few years that I have studied my faith on my own and truly begun to know and understand it. I have learned so much!...and I am so thankful!