Votes tallied: Catholic delegates decide on priorities for church during synod

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- It was a big weekend for Catholics in southeastern Wisconsin, as they cast votes on the future of the church. This isn't something that happens often. In fact, it's been 27 years!

The event is called a synod.

It is a gathering of Catholics from the 10 counties that make up the Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

On Sunday, June 8th, they voted on the direction they'd like to see the church go.

A traditional Mass on Sunday marked the end of the synod.

Delegates, representing more than 200 parishes in the Archdiocese, as well as Catholic hospitals, schools and charities spent the weekend voting on what they think priorities of the Archdiocese should be over the next 10 to 15 years.

"They`re praying over which way we should place our priorities and where we should place our resources," Archbishop Jerome Listecki said.

The electronic devices used to tally votes on Sunday weren't around the last time the synod was held -- back in 1987.

Among the top priorities voted on by these delegates is the use of new technology to draw Catholics back into the church.

"People talked about trying to get Catholics who maybe come to church once a month or once a year to come back and visit the Catholic Church again," Rev. Dennis Saran said.

"We have a lot of dormant Catholics out there, sleepy Catholics out there," Archbishop Listecki said.

Archbishop Listecki says one of the group's top priorities is launching a campaign to promote marriage and family.

This recommendation comes just days after a federal judge overturned Wisconsin's ban on same-sex marriage.

"It`s more than just a contract and to understand that and to live that out gives a quality to the relationship between and man and a woman in marriage that sometimes is forgotten in our secular world," Archbishop Listecki said.

"I think that`s not just local but I think the Catholic Church universal is also interested in looking at the marriage and family because we really think the Catholic Church feels the family is really the Catholic Church in miniature," Rev. Saran said.

Delegates voted for a number of priorities on Sunday -- that all go to Archbishop Listecki as recommendations.

In September, Archbishop Listecki will release a plan to further those priorities over the next decade and beyond.


  • Ryan

    Here’s the thing – you can’t just say we are going to “recruit better” or “evangelize better” or “share our story better” and folks will flock back and/or join the Church. The problem isn’t marketing, it’s Church teaching (e.g., contraception), abuse of power, and lack of moral credibility (e.g., sex abuse cover-up). Until the Church undergoes an authentic conversion which transforms itself into a more just, inclusive, accountable, and transparent institution, all other efforts fail (and rightfully so). The people of God want a just and inclusive Church which opens itself to all people. Come, Holy Spirit, Come!

    • Pght

      Absolutely nothing wrong with Church teaching. Those very teachings continue to produce countless numbers of profoundly wonderful men and woman in all walks of life doing heroic things for humanity. Undoubtedly, the people that criticise the teachings have never read an encyclical or bothered to delve into the teachings on any deep level. Unfortunately there are some dreadful representatives doing the Church no favours. But that doesn’t in any way compromise the teachings. After all, if one plays chess badly does that make chess a bad game?

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