Monday, 19 May 2003

Murcia (Fides Service) – “The world of today is not alien to values, as one might think. Although at times the search for meaning takes inconsistent and commonplace paths, this must not lead us to ignore the anxieties of our contemporaries; we must read them as possible signs of the times to which we must respond with particular diligence”. Archbishop Foley, President of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, affirmed this when he addressed the 2nd International Congress on “The Church and Catholic means of social communications in the 21st century” held in Murcia, Spain, 15-17 May.
Referring to the sensitive question of “ethic communication and ethics in communication”, the Archbishop said: “Every person, believer or not, wishing to live life in profundity and not in a superficial manner, must look at the moral framework of his actions, reflect on the real motives and also the consequences for himself and for the society to which he belongs. This is all the more important if this work in the field of social communications because it can affect millions of people”.
Today there are people who think the social communications – the Internet for example – should be “an unlimited space for unlimited liberty”: in this regard Archbishop Foley said that the Church upholds freedom of expression as the basis of democracy, but in the field of the media it is necessary to create legislation and norms to regulate the life of the media. These duties regard not only communicators but also users have the duty to discern and to choose. The whole of society has the duty to “demand of the media authenticity and respect for human dignity, above all that of the weakest and helpless”. Archbishop Foley proposed as a model for all communicators, the Risen Christ.
- For the Risen Christ no barrier is insurmountable, therefore Catholic communicators must pass through the walls which divide humanity.
- The Lord accompanies man on his way as he did the travellers of Emmaus, but he does not stop at small worries and narrow human concerns: after explaining the meaning of events he opens horizons to which they respond with enthusiasm which renders them communicators of the resurrection.
- Forgiveness and mercy do not prevent Jesus from indicating the truths – at times uncomfortable – which lead to conversion, although always in a climate of love and forgiveness;
- - The Risen Lord is the source of hope and joy: in the field of social communications, acting like risen people also means highlighting positive news, offering example and witness.RZ (Fides Service 19/5/2003 EM lines 35 Words: 460)