Archbishop Malcolm has decided to call a Synod for the Archdiocese because he needs what the International Theological Commission calls a grace filled event in which the People of God together with the Bishop meet to address the pastoral challenges of the time.
In 2005 Archbishop Patrick Kelly presented to the Diocese the Leaving Safe Harbours programme. This enabled priests and people, parishes and deaneries (pastoral areas) to work together in new ways. It was intended to be a 10 year project.
When Archbishop Kelly retired shortly before the conclusion of Leaving Safe Harbours he was succeeded by Archbishop Malcolm. Having looked around and having become aware of the most recent pastoral challenges in the Archdiocese Archbishop Malcolm has decided to call a Diocesan Synod. This enables the whole Diocese to be involved in charting the way forward.
The Archbishop is deeply committed to the fact that God will speak to us through the bishops, priests, deacons, religious and people of the Archdiocese. That is why the Synod is called, “Becoming the Church we are called to be.” Every person has a voice and their voice must be heard. The Synod will inspire us and direct us as we find new and exciting ways to meet the challenges of being a members of the Catholic Church in 2018 and in the years to come. The Liverpool Archdiocesan Synod in 2020 will, to use the words of Archbishop Malcolm, enable us to regain our missionary spirit so that the call to holiness we heard in our baptism is expressed by a change of direction. Baptism has changed us so that as Christians we live no longer for ourselves but for others.
Why a Synod? To enable the Archbishop to lead the local church as it faces the challenges of our time and place.