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Pope Francis speaks to journalists aboard the papal plane yesterday (VaticanMedia)

Pope Francis yesterday outlined his vision for the upcoming synodal assembly in October, which he said should be a prayerful exercise in dialogue free from ideology, not full of “political chatter” like a television talk show. Source: CNA.

Pope Francis was peppered with multiple questions about the Synod on Synodality from journalists travelling with him on the 10-hour flight from Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, to Rome yesterday.

“In the Synod, there is no place for ideology,” Pope Francis told journalists on the chartered ITA Airways plane.

“There is no place for ideology, but there is room for dialogue, for an exchange between brothers and sisters,” he added.

Pope Francis emphasised the unique spiritual dimension of the first global Synod on Synodality assembly taking place at the Vatican on October 4-28. He said that he wants it to be “a religious moment”.

He highlighted how the synodal assembly should have three to four minutes of silent prayer between discussions, noting that this prayerful atmosphere should be what distinguishes a synodal assembly from “parliamentarianism.”

“Without this spirit of prayer, there is no synodality,” the Pope said.

The Synod should not be like a television talk show where everything is discussed, the Pope explained, but a “dialogue between the baptised”.

When asked why Synod discussions will be taking place behind closed doors without access for journalists and how the Synod can maintain transparency with this format, Pope Francis responded that the Synod will be “very open”.

Pope Francis explained that there is a Commission for Information under the leadership of layman Paolo Ruffini, the prefect of the Vatican Dicastery for Communications, that “will make press releases on how the proceedings of the Synod are going” and “provide information on the progress of the Synod.”

“In the Synod, the religiosity and the loyalty of the people who speak must be guarded, and this is why there is the commission led by Ruffini,” he said.


What Pope Francis had to say about the Synod on Synodality in the in-flight press conference (By Courtney Mares, CNA)