Thursday, October 29, 2009

Evangelization of the "digital continent"

Image source: DigistreamSaas

















Catholic News Agency reports that this morning Pope Benedict XVI addressed the Pontifical Council for Social Communications. In his remarks, the pope urged the Commission to communicate the teachings of the Church on the "digital continent" of today's communications technology. (Benedict first used the image of the "digital continent" in his World Communications Day Message on May 24, 2009.) worldcommunicationsday2010
Reflecting on the role of social networking and increasingly real-time electronic communication, Pope Benedict XVI said on Thursday that "modern culture is established, even before its content, in the very fact of the existence of new forms of communication that use new languages; they use new technologies and create new psychological attitudes.”

"Effectively," he continued, the advent of new technology “supposes a challenge for the Church, which is called to announce the Gospel to persons in the third millennium, maintaining its content unaltered but making it understandable.”

Quoting John Paul II's encyclical "Redemptoris Missio" that affirms: "Involvement in the mass media, however, is not meant merely to strengthen the preaching of the Gospel. There is a deeper reality involved here: since the very evangelization of modern culture depends to a great extent on the influence of the media.”

“It is not enough to use the media simply to spread the Christian message and the Church's authentic teaching. It is also necessary to integrate that message into the 'new culture' created by modern communications," the Holy Father asserted.

Pope Benedict also emphasized the need to promote a culture of respect, a culture aware of the dignity of the human being. He charged those companies and individuals responsible for the development and promotion of new media as ones “capable of developing the gifts and talents of each and of putting them at the service of the human community."

"In this way the Church exercises that which can be defined as a ‘diaconate of culture’ on today's ‘digital continent,’ using its means to announce the Gospel, the only Word that can save the human being,” the Pope proclaimed...

(read the complete report) wcd2010
-ConcordPastor

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