Cardinal DiNardo saw the synod as an ellipse with the two focal points of marriage and family. "The two occasionally came into concord, sometimes into some discord," he said.
Bishop delegates from the U.S. were impressed by the witness of bishops from all over the world – the "truly international dimension of the Church," as Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia described it – and they had high praise for the bishops from Africa and Eastern Europe in particular.
The bishops from those areas were "astounding," Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York testified, and were "particularly compelling in their exhortations about marriage and family life."
Cardinal DiNardo was "most impressed" by the "assertiveness" of the bishops from the "developing world," particularly from Africa.
The testimonies from India and Africa showed that their "family structure is much more cohesive" than in the West, Bishop Murry noted. He added that the bishops from those areas expressed concern – and sometimes anger – about the harmful effects of consumerism and technocracy on the family that are exported by the developed world.
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There was also a "wonderful experience of fraternity" among the U.S. bishops who attended, said Archbishop Chaput, highlighted by their celebration of daily Mass together.
The Philadelphia archbishop also clarified that "some of the reports" of "battles" at the synod were not true. There were indeed "significant differences" among some bishops, but they were "for the most part" handled with a "fraternal spirit," he said.
"There was real conversion that took place" at the synod, said Archbishop Blase Cupich of Chicago. "People considered their positions in different ways" after hearing each other, he added.