I just finished reading Pope Francis' closing talk to the Synod Fathers. Some thoughts: Our Pope consistently corrects the self-righteous. For instance: It was also about laying closed hearts, which bare the closed hearts which frequently hide even behind the Church’s teachings or good intentions, in order to sit in the chair of Moses and judge, sometimes with superiority and superficiality, difficult cases and wounded families. He stated something similar at the end of last year's synod, too, encouraging all to avoid... …a temptation to hostile inflexibility, that is, wanting to close oneself within the written word, (the letter) and not allowing oneself to be surprised by God, by the God of surprises, (the spirit); within the law, within the certitude of what we know and not of what we still need to learn and to achieve. From the time of Christ, it is the temptation of the zealous, of the scrupulous, of the solicitous and of the so-called – today – “traditionalists” and also of the intellectuals. So it is obvious our Pope despises anything of a pharasaical nature. However, last year he also spoke against the opposing temptation: - The temptation to a destructive tendency to goodness that in the name of a deceptive mercy binds the wounds without first curing them and treating them; that treats the symptoms and not the causes and the roots. It is the temptation of the “do-gooders,” of the fearful, and also of the so-called “progressives and liberals.” Mark Mallett does a much better job of expounding on these points! It is interesting that in this year's closing statements the Pope failed to mention this destructive tendency. However, he did quote Pope Benedict, highlighting a way to speak the truth in love: When the Church has to recall an unrecognized truth, or a betrayed good, she always does so impelled by merciful love, so that men may have life and have it abundantly (cf. Jn 10:10) So this is my response to the Synod- to begin the Year of Mercy early and when impelled by merciful love, to bring to the mind of the straying an unrecognized truth! Keep me Lord from any judgmental attitude and give me a servant heart. Safe in Flames of the Sacred Heart!