Sunday, May 20, 2012

46th World Communication Day

"Silence is an integral element of communication; in its absence, words rich in content cannot exist. In silence, we are better able to listen to and understand ourselves; ideas come to birth and acquire depth; we understand with greater clarity what it is we want to say and what we expect from others; and we choose how to express ourselves." These are the words used in Pope Benedict's message to us on World Communication Day, the Feast of the Ascension.

The editorial in the Catholic Times reminds us that this day was created 46 years ago to show the importance of the mass media and to foster its use in spreading the good news. We are told of the Pope's concern and the importance of silence in communication. He points out the many sites  across the internet that can help us grow in our spiritual life, and he urges the Church to become interested in the possibilities of evangelization using the mass media.

We live in a world flooded with information, and the quality of life we experience is mostly influenced by how much of this information from the mass media is used to form and guide our lives. The extent of mass media communication is so pervasive today that we have christened it the information age. Understanding its potential to shape our lives through the power of satellite broadcasting and the internet will help us see how revolutionary this new network encircling the world has become.

The Church needs to put this technology to use in spreading the good news. Granted, the editorial states, the Church cannot  compete with the commercial efforts of big business; however, in her  own way the Church has the mission of spreading the truth that she  has received. This will require all who are working in the media to expend their energies in achieving this goal, if we are to follow the example of Jesus, who was the communicator par excellence. Churches have to make efforts to spread his love to all;  this is the  vocation we all have. Use of the mass media has to grow if the Church's future is to be bright. 

In the same issue, a  journalist comments that the Church's message of truth is just one of the messages among countless others around the world. We can think it is only a question of speaking about Jesus, but this is not what moves hearts. It is the experience of Jesus in our lives that is the message that we need to give.

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