Nov. 5 - The Vatican launches a global survey to find out what Catholics think about the church's teachings on family life and marriage. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
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As the Vatican opens discussion on family life Catholics should not expect quick changes to Church rules against divorce, contraception and gay marriage.
The Vatican sent out a survey to dioceses around the world ahead of a meeting of bishops, on the theme of the family, scheduled for next October.
A leaked copy of the survey was published by the National Catholic Reporter raising speculation that the survey could lead to changes in Church rules.
But Vatican Cardinal Peter Erdo made it clear that any change would come slowly
(SOUNDBITE) (Italian) SYNOD COORDINATOR, CARDINAL PETER ERDO SAYING:
"We don't have a desire to re-open all the discussion on catholic doctrine but based on pastoral experiences we see many situations where we can try to find concrete solutions."
The survey does not signal any shift in Church doctrine toward gay marriage or birth control, but signals a change of approach say Robert Mickens of the Catholic newspaper the Tablet.
SOUNDBITE) (English) WRITER FOR CATHOLIC NEWSPAPER THE TABLET, ROBERT MICKENS SAYING:
"I think that this idea of taking a risk is something certainly that has been encouraged by Pope Francis who has said 'I don't want a church that is closed in on itself but a church that is accident prone' that means it is alive, it is willing to go out to listen, to accept and to be in dialogue with the world."
Some say it's about time.
(SOUNDBITE) (Italian) ROME RESIDENT GIUSEPPE REITANO SAYING:
"This is an innovation in the Vatican, a step forward. They were a bit behind with these things."
Full action on the survey is not expected until 2015.
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