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Caption: Pope Francis attends the morning session on the final day of the extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the family at the Vatican Oct. 18. (CNS/Paul Haring)
Pope Francis attends the morning session on the final day of the extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the family at the Vatican Oct. 18. (CNS/Paul Haring)
Did Pope Francis get what he wanted from the synod?

By Francis X. Rocca
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Since the end of the Oct. 5-19 Synod of Bishops on the family, news outlets have portrayed the outcome as a "setback" or "loss" for Pope Francis -- even a "rebuke" to him.

Journalists have pointed to the absence, in the synod's final report, of an earlier version's strikingly conciliatory language toward people with ways of life contrary to Catholic teaching, including those in same-sex unions and other non-marital relationships. Commentators have also noted the relatively low support, as measured by bishops' votes on the final document's relevant sections, for continued discussion of whether to make it easier for divorced and civilly remarried Catholics to receive Communion.
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Caption: Students dressed in costumes attend the Halloween carnival at Santa Cruz Catholic School in Tucson, Ariz., Oct. 24. The annual event brought together hundreds of students, parents and neighbors for a night of entertainment and fun. (CNS/Nancy Wiechec)
Students dressed in costumes attend the Halloween carnival at Santa Cruz Catholic School in Tucson, Ariz., Oct. 24. The annual event brought together hundreds of students, parents and neighbors for a night of entertainment and fun. (CNS/Nancy Wiechec)
NEWS BRIEFS Oct-31-2014
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THIS WEEK IN ORIGINS

Editors: Contents of Origins CNS Documentary Service, Vol. 44, No. 23 (Nov. 6, 2014):

-- The problems of development and the just regulation of the economy cannot be solved without a holistic vision of the human person and a commitment to moral standards based in natural law and pursuit of the common good, says Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican secretary of state.

-- Political insecurity, the economic crisis and globalization pose questions about Europe's identity and its place in the world that require integrated economic and social policies, says the president of the German bishops' conference, Cardinal Reinhard Marx. He counts youth unemployment, the ongoing economic and social crisis, demographic change, migration and human trafficking among Europe's foremost challenges.

-- Catholics must reject polarizing and politicized discussion of climate change "in favor of approaches and solutions that serve the common good and preserve the precious gifts entrusted to us," says Miami Archbishop Thomas G. Wenski. He heads the U.S. bishops' Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development.

-- The road to cordial relations between the Catholic and Orthodox churches had been rocky if not hostile for centuries, but key events in the 20th century, including the Second Vatican Council, made both ancient Christian bodies regard each other with a new vision and "liberated" the Eastern Catholic churches, says Atonement Friar Elias D. Mallon, an ecumenical scholar.


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