Tips for following the Synod for Young People

We are just beginning Week 2 of the Synod. (It runs from Oct. 3-28.) The more I follow it, the more I have been enjoying the way the Synod is “modeling” community discernment for the Church.

The Synod offers insights that are helpful for anyone discerning how God might be calling them to serve, as the it highlights the needs of humanity across the globe.  Here are my current favorite sources for following the Synod. (If you are already following the Synod, please share below in the comments how you are following it, and what has impressed you!)

Archbishop Fisher’s Daily Blog of the Synod    This is the first place I check every day. Archbishop Fisher’s blog is accessible and offers real insight into what is happening there on a daily basis.

Synod 2018 on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram   The Synod’s official social media.

The Synod’s Official website (with the Instrumentum Laboris or Working Document)  If you wonder what IL is, or what “document” everyone is talking about, you can find it here. It’s a bit long for an easy read, but if you download the document and search for discernment (or any other topic you’re interested in), you will see what the small groups are referring to.

Salt + Light TV’s Frequent Synod Updates (including blogposts, 5 minute video updates, and longer TV shows). The link goes to the blog for yesterday, Oct. 9.

Catholic News Service offers fairly comprehensive coverage that offers more detail.

If you are a young person discerning your vocation, I would love to hear from you. Have you been following the Synod? Why or why not?  And if yes, have you gained any insights?

You can comment below, on my Facebook page, or email me.


New Discernment@theMovies Guide: Entertaining Angels

EntertainingAngelsCoverThe next couple of movies that I will be posting a “Discernment@theMovies Guide” are among my favorite movies! The 1996 biopic, Entertaining Angels: The Dorothy Day Story,  is a wonderful portrayal of the life of an amazing woman who might be canonized some day. You might remember that Pope Francis spoke about her to the U.S. Congress on his recent visit:

“In these times when social concerns are so important, I cannot fail to mention the Servant of God Dorothy Day, who founded the Catholic Worker Movement. Her social activism, her passion for justice and for the cause of the oppressed, were inspired by the Gospel, her faith, and the example of the saints.”


Dorothy Day in 1934

Paulist priest Father Ellwood “Bud” Kieser produced two of my favorite biopics as part of his mission of evangelization: Entertaining Angels: The Dorothy Day Story,  and Romero. Both are wonderful movies and biographies that are not only enjoyable and moving to watch, but also portray the profound spirituality of the protagonists. Both films are also very helpful to watch from the perspective of discernment. This week, I’ve posted up the Discerning@theMovies Guide for Entertaining Angels. This movie stands the test of time because of the genuine way it shows Dorothy wrestling with God and her idea of God, her vocation, and her mission. Those of us attentive to the spiritual art of discernment will appreciate the gradual way that Dorothy found her mission, and then how God confirms her mission for her in moments of crisis.

To get the most out of the film, you might want to read a short biography ahead of time. You can find much more information about Dorothy Day at the Dorothy Day Guild website. Note that Cardinal Dolan of the Archdiocese of New York recently announced that Dorothy’s cause for canonization is taking its next step forward with a “canonical inquiry” into her writings and the testimony of witnesses.

You can find the Entertaining_Angels_Discernment@MoviesGuide here.