ROME, Italy, Oct. 25, 2014—A Filipino Catholic priest said the recently concluded Synod of Bishops on the Family event is a triumph of Divine love, calling it a “journey of humans with God at their side”.
“It is in God’s love that people, in spite their shortcomings, find strength,” Fr. Norman Melchor Peña, Jr. of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP)’s Episcopal Commission on Culture (ECC) stated.
While closely following the Synod’s proceedings, hearing and reading from ordained and lay delegates alike the various issues raised from poverty, homosexuality, and common-law marriage, to same-sex relationships, pedophilia, abuse, and others, the priest saw human flaws at their worst.
Peña, however, pointed out that while it has it has its inherent weaknesses and limitations, human culture can compensate for its defects through “love”.
“Moments of despair and pain find reason to hope … We find our way on the journey of human beings with God at our side,” he stressed.
Besides the Synod, Peña noted the talk given by Manila Archbishop Luís Antonio G. Cardinal Tagle in an informal dialogue held at Rome’s Collegio Filippino on October 17 offered a “familial” proposal.
In the forum, the Synod’s delegate-president shared the story of a woman who affirms the Church’s teaching on the permanence of marriage, even as her own marriage had already broken down.
She asked Tagle, “What is permanent in marriage?”
Quoting the prelate, Peña said, “Clothed with our personal experiences, each of us can perhaps respond with what we consider as permanent in our lives.”
So. what then is permanent in relationships?
“The authentic response is indeed love, but that which never changes, often claimed foolish’, and often incomprehensible—God’s love!” he declared. (Raymond A. Sebastián)