It has been a criticism from most of the people that the Catholic Church is teaching more than listening. It has been expressed clearly in survey conducted by the Church all over the world.
Questionnaire on family life in the Catholic Church
Initiated by Vatican, a survey on family life in the Catholic Church was disseminated by the Church authorities as a preparation for the forthcoming Synod on the Family, scheduled for October, 2014. All the dioceses of the church were supplied with copies of a questionnaire to be circulated widely in their respective dioceses and to send in theirresults by December 2013.
The four main areas of the questionnaire
The questionnaire focused four main areas. They were:
1) Relationship in the families
2) Birth control
3) Gender issues
4) Relationship between the church and laity
The relationship in the family is very vital. The questionnaire focused its attention on family relationships and modern pressures on the family, divorce and remarriage, and premarital sex.
The second point was on birth control and contraception, and issues related to responsible parenthood.
Third one concentrated on the gender issues as well as sexuality between men and women and same-sex relationships. Abuse and violence in the family were also mentioned.
The last area was to study how the Church meets the laity with her teachings and the concern towards the laity.
The results of the survey have revealed the true face of the church. For exampleit portrayed the great breech that exists between Church theory and practice.
The surprising results of the survey
The survey clearly showed how most of the teachings of the church on premarital sex, contraception, divorce and remarriage, and same-sex relationships are ignored and defied in the church, especially in the western world.
The reactions to the survey were not uniform all over the world.
It differed according to the geographical, cultural, and ethnic differences. A vast difference of opinions has been found on issues such as divorce, remarriage and receiving Holy Communion.
The family relationship has to be studied under the emerging challenges of the changing situations and has to be approached in a very positive manner. Families have to find practical solutions for their issues that arise in the changed lifestyle all over the world. It is deeply felt that the upcoming Synod would highlight a need for change in the Church of today. It hopes that church would become more "a listening Church" than a "teaching Church".