Summary of the Pope’s Message to the 47th World Communications Day

Social networks: portals of truth and faith; new spaces for evangelization

Summarized by Fr. Joselito Jopson

You may use this material in developing homilies and points for reflection:

1.      The social networks are the new “agora” and help foster dialogue and debate that reinforce bonds of unity between individuals and promote harmony of the human family. Eventually, it is not the ideas and information that are shared, but ultimately, our very selves.

2.      What social networks are for: to build relationships, make friends, look for answers to questions, to find intellectual stimulation, share knowledge.  Communities are also built. They are nourished by the aspirations rooted in human heart.

3.      A great degree of truth and values is at stake here vs. popularity, relying on persuasion rather than logic of argumentation.  Thus, people should commit to the value of dialogue, reasoned debate, and logical argumentation; discourse and expression which appeal to the noblest aspirations of those involved in the communication process.

4.      The task therefore is how to be inclusive, benefiting from the full participation of believers who desire to share the message of Jesus and human dignity.  The Good news at this point is so important, but it may be absent in the experience of many people in this world. The digital environment runs parallel to the world, especially the young.

5.      The new language is to be used for the Gospel to reach the minds and hearts of all.  It is composed of images and sound, imagination and affectivity to invite people to an encounter with the mystery of God’s love.  The icons are translated to this world to portray the truths of faith.

6.      In social networks, believers show authenticity by sharing the source of their hope and joy: faith in the merciful and loving God in Christ Jesus, verified by the witness, through their choices, preference, judgments fully consistent with the Gospel, eventually confirming Religion in public debate and life of society.

7.      Love, truth, meaning of life – are found only in Jesus, in the midst of heated and divisive voices, sensationalism, we are called to attentive discernment, quoting Elijah who saw the Lord, not in earthquake or fire, but in a still, small voice.

8.      Social network: a factor in human development, reinforcing unity in global community., facilitating spiritual and liturgical resources, helping people to pray with closeness to those who share the faith to those who are distance from it.  There are direct encounters, experience of the community and even pilgrimages, until the ends of the earth.

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