Day of Prayer

Pope Francis has asked that Sunday, September 28 be set aside as a Day of Prayer for the III Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops which begins on Sunday, October 5 to treat the topic: The Pastoral Challenges of the Family in the Context of Evangelization.

The synod will be held Oct. 5-19, and is but the first of two paired synods. In 2015, an ordinary synod of bishops on the family will be held, and will carry to conclusion the process of discussion began with this year's extraordinary synod.

The suggested prayers include the Prayer to the Holy Family for the Synod, composed by Pope Francis. The recitation of the Holy Rosary is also recommended for the duration of the synodal assembly.

An extraordinary synod is convoked by the Pope to discuss urgent matters, and so it does not undergo the procedure of selection of its members which characterizes the ordinary synod of bishops.

Presidents of Bishops' conferences, as well as the heads of the dicasteries of the Roman Curia, are ‘de officio’ appointed as members of the synod, while there are also members directly chosen by Pope Francis.  253 persons will take part in the extraordinary synod for the family.

The questionnaire comprised of 38 questions, posed in an unusually straightforward manner, addressing issues very pragmatically, was also published online, and the General Secretariat of the synod encouraged everyone to send their responses directly to Rome.

“I would like to remind you that the next assembly of the synod of bishops is titled ‘the pastoral challenges of the family in the context of evangelization.’ So the synod will deal with the family in its various aspects – not with a single issue,”  Cardinal Baldisseri said in a May 20 interview.