The Quiet Revolution of Pope Francis- A Synodal Catholic Church in Ireland

25/10/2018Print This Post


                                                                          will meet on 

                                                          Monday the 5th November in

                                                  St. Columbanus Hall, Howth, at 8.00pm.

                                       jacket, The Quiet Revolution of Pope Francis

Fr. Gerry O’Hanlon SJ will speak on his latest book ‘The Quiet Revolution of Pope Francis’. Fr. Gerry is a theologian and author of many books, including ‘Theology in the public square’ and ‘A new vision for the Catholic Church’ and is currently Social Theologian with the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice.

Commenting on his latest book Dermot Lane observes ‘This is not an armchair theology but one chiselled out of engaging with diverse groups’ and ‘heeding the prophetic voice of the Bishop of Rome’.

Michael Kirwan SJ describes the book as ‘the missing piece of the jigsaw’ and a ‘wise, critical but hopeful diagnosis that offers the glimpse of a longed for sea-change for the church’.

                                                                     ALL WELCOME


14 Responses to “The Quiet Revolution of Pope Francis- A Synodal Catholic Church in Ireland”
  1. John Farrelly says:

    Hello There,
    Is it possible that this event could be recorded and posted later. I would love to attend but will unfortunately be out of the country.

    • Mary Vallely says:

      Unfortunately I cannot get to Howth for this but intend buying Gerry’s book. He is very calm, very measured and quietly challenging. ( like a good Jesuit!). Would urge anyone who is able to attend to do so because as John Farrelly rightly points out we have so few opportunities to meet together for healthy discussion and debate on church/ life issues. John has already started a conversation on the ACI FB page, I am pleased to say.
      I am quite sure Gerry O’Hanlon would be open to discussing his book with other groups around the country if invited. Must spread the word. ( pun intended).😀

  2. Noel McCann says:

    Thank you John and Mary for your positive comments in relation to Gerry O’Hanlon’s talk in Howth on November 5th. The Howth Parish Reform and Renewal Group is organising the event. The group is slowly expanding it’s reach to other parishes in the area and drawing more people into active involvement in discussing church affairs.

    As you point out Mary, events such as this talk provide an opportunity for debate on the future of our church and how we can preserve our Christian identity for future generations.

    John, while a recording would be convenient, I think the real value is in the opportunity for people to come together and, having heard Gerry speak, freely engage in an open conversation on the issues.

    I wonder, given your interest in the topics under discussion, whether you, or any other contributors to the ACI website or Facebook Page, would be interested in hosting a similar event in your local area. I firmly believe that we urgently need lay people to assert themselves and engage actively in the debate on where our church goes from here. We are surely at a critical cross-roads at this point and we either engage and try to influence the future direction or else allow others to decide on what form of church, if any, will survive in this country to preserve the message of Jesus.

    • johnpfarrelly says:

      Noel. I don’t disagree at all about the true value being in participation but still believe that there would be learning to be gained from a recording being available. Thank you for your suggestion to host something – I note John Kelly’s later comment about checking in with his North Wicklow Group. I am not aware of such a Reform Group in my area but will now go about checking. Is there a network of such groups that you are aware of?
      Thanks again

      • Noel McCann says:

        I’m not aware of a reform group in your area but I’m sure there are people locally who would share your views. The ACI would be very happy to assist you if you decided to organise a meeting to initiate a discussion on church reform. The Howth Group was established some years ago by a small number of people who shared an interest in discussing topical church issues, in particular the urgent need for reform.

        • johnpfarrelly says:

          Thanks a million Noel for your helpful suggestion and offered assistance.

          I will think and more importantly pray for guidance on it.


  3. Ben Flood says:

    Hi Noel ,
    Wishing you all the best for your event with Fr Gerry O’Hanlon.
    I was at the event that launched his book in Dublin some months ago. We have the book at home.
    Fr Gerry is an interesting speaker who’s well worth listening to.

  4. MartinM says:

    The following is a quote from the National Catholic Reporter’s article on the closing of the latest Synod of Bishops in Rome:-

    Picking up one of the central themes Francis’ five-year papacy, the document ends with a call for the church to become more “synodal,” referencing a Greek root that means to “walk together” and possibly indicating a future move towards decentralization and more sharing of authority between bishops and laypeople.

    As the text says, a “synodal” church would be “participative and co-responsible … welcoming with gratitude the contribution of lay faithful.”

    Gracias, who is also the president of the Indian bishops’ conference and a member of the Council of Cardinals, said that such a church would involve bishops who can “feel comfortable sharing power.”

    I have no doubt that Gerry O’Hanlon will have something to say on how to move from rhetoric to reality.

  5. Pascal O'Dea says:

    great to hear of the upcoming meeting in Howth with Fr Gerry,and the reference to a “synodal” church and the call by Cardinal Gracias for bishops who feel comfortable sharing power from comments after the Synod on Young People.A local meeting here in Carlow with Fr Gerry would be worthwhile I am sure.

  6. John Kelly says:

    Noel the Howth Group’s initiative on this is great. I will check with the North Wicklow Group to see if we could emulate what you are doing with Gerry O’Hanlon. The book is an excellent signpost on the road to reform.

  7. johnpfarrelly says:

    Thanks a million Noel for your helpful suggestion and offered assistance.

    I will think and more importantly pray for guidance on it.


  8. Noel McCann says:

    We caught a glimpse of a potential new style of church to-night. 50 [plus] people heard Gerry O’Hanlon’s talk about a new way forward using the ‘Synodal Approach’. Gerry provided us with a most interesting insight into the approach of Pope Francis. This talk is really essential to an understanding of what the future might hold for us if we can just motivate our church leadership to trust in Pope Francis and follow his example.
    As Mary O’Vallely said ‘spread the word’!!

    • Mary Vallely says:

      And we have and we will! Gerry O’Hanlon will be in the O Fiaich Library here in Armagh on Saturday 19th January. ( 10am- 1pm) Will be advertising this event shortly but keep the date free in your diaries.
      I look forward to stimulating, hope- filled discussions after his talk, attended by all those interested in reform, both laity and clergy. This is something we can work on together. Thank you to Noel and the ACI team in Howth for starting these discussions off.

  9. John Kelly says:

    I attended the Howth meeting on Monday. It was refreshing. Gerry O’ Hanlon’s presentation reviewed where ‘church’ is now . His description of where Francis is leading was clear and informative. His reference to paragraph 27 in The Joy of the Gospel appears key. I.e.Francis dream of a “missionary impulse” through the “ordinary” refreshing how ” church” does things .
    What was also interesting was the question, answer and contributions from the attendees. It illustrated the spectrum of views extremely well. It is rare to get this open forum where discussion allows us to walk together as we recognise the need for a synodal approach at this time- the Emaas road on the Cristian journey

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