As scandals rage around you - Chile, China, the USA, the Vatican - it makes for a useful distraction if you have a Yoof Synod running. Ask your dear friend Cardinal Baldfacedliar to write the full documents of the synod well in advance, and stick a "Magisterial" label on them. Don't under any circumstances allow anyone to know what was actually agreed during the synod - it will bear no relation to Baldy's final document, anyway.
Two versions of the Synod Logo.
Now, you need to have a few Yoof in the Synod, say 10% of the number present. Ignore "Uncle Fred" if he telephones you asking you to pick some good-looking ones - it will only get you into trouble. Of course all the decisions will be made by bishops who know what the Yoof want - or, more precisely, by Baldy in consultation with some of your top advisers - so ignore any requests for orthodox teaching, the Mass of their forefathers, or indeed anything religious. Instead, make sure you address LGBT issues, climate change, and plastic straws, as these are the things that Yoof lose sleep over.
Fr James Martin LGBTSJ jets in.
Now you need to get down wiv da Yoof, even if you aren't really going to take any notice of them. Perhaps you could invite some young Catholic rock stars that you know they like - Bono, Cliff Richard, Mick Jagger? Your mentor Cardinal Kasper says that they're all fans of Harry Potter - which is all about the fat wizard Dolandore, Professor McCarrickall, Severus Snapero, and the man we all love to hiss, Viganomort. You see where this is leading?
Get yourself a witches' stang!
In the old days pre-2013, the bishop's crozier was modelled on a shepherd's crook, with the stupid outdated traddy idea that pastors were in some sense shepherds of their sheep. Nowadays we prefer to channel the spirit of Saruman, or Radagast, or paganism in general. So get yourself a trusty witches' stang, and the Yoof will think you are "ace", "cool" and "groovy" (modern English Yoof slang courtesy of Cardinal Nichols!)
Now all synods have committees, and your hope is that these will keep the bishops sober and make them believe they are influencing the Synod. But here comes a snag! Cardinal Sarah-Jane, the man waiting in the wings for you to pop off, has refused to serve on one of them! He cites "personal reasons" but you know that what he's really thinking is: "When I become Pope I'm going to declare this Synod invalid." This is tricky, we must think of more ways to humiliate him (cf. Burke, Müller, Festing, etc.)
And now - let's party with a demon!
The Yoof have written you a letter saying that what they would really like would be for you to celebrate a traditional Latin Mass, with Gregorian chant. But Baldy has "lost" this letter, and reconstructed it from memory - so officially what they want is to go "clubbing". Invite in some more young idols of the yoof - say, Paul McCartney, the ever-young Madonna (age 94), and even that good Catholic Cher. This will keep them quiet, and you can Carry on Synodding.
To be continued?