Dreams of Synodality in the Church Community

Violetta Zajac rscj from Poland took part in the local consultations of the “Toward Synodality” Synod. Read about her motivations and experience below.

I participated in the local consultations of the Synod "Toward Synodality"  at different levels, in the parish, in my daily community with other RSCJ and lay people, and in the informal women's group "What dreams do women have about the Church?". I was very motivated  to participate and support others in the Synod. I saw the Synod as a chance to influence the Church community as ordinary people and a possibility for lay people to take more  responsibility there. Instead of going along with what happens in the Church, we could take part in its changes. It was also a chance for people to find their own place in the Church community, and I started to think about this Synod as a space for people who feel on  the peripheries of the Church and Society.

Another motivation is connected with my passion for justice and peace. It is a matter of justice that all Christians can participate in the dialogue about the Church community's future, because they are baptized and have a mission in the Church community. In Poland we have great diversity in the Church, which enriches it but also sometimes causes tension between different groups of people. I hope that when we use the synodal dialogue in the Church, we can create unity in diversity. We could also improve skills regarding listening and understanding each other, and making decisions in a process of discernment.

The Society of the Sacred Heart has some methods for following the synodal way in community. I really enjoyed sharing the way we discern and creating unity in diversity with others. I was touched that the final document of the Synod in the Vatican uses such a familiar expression for us: “unity in diversity”, as that is what I experienced in those different groups.  We have learned to listen each other, to welcome quiet voices, and to trust. We have also learned that the voice of lay people is very important and every person has the right to be in this process, which means we can influence the changes in the Church. I hope that we have added our small drop to the ocean of synodality in the global Church.

Viola Zając rscj