What is World Communications Day?
History of World Communications Day
This year marks the Church’s 51st World Communications Sunday (“WCD”). WCD has been celebrated every year since 1967 on the Sunday before Pentecost. Every year on the feast day of St Francis de Sales, the patron saint of journalists, the Pope unveils the WCD theme of the year. On this World Communications Sunday, Pope Francis invites all of us to offer the people of our time storylines that are at heart “good news”.
Show us the Father
What better model of this relationship is there than the Holy Trinity? God is the perfect Communicator! He is the Sender (the Father), the Message (the Good News), the Messenger (the Son and the Word Incarnate), and the medium of communication (the Holy Spirit who teaches us everything) all in One. (Vatican II Pastoral Instruction: Communio et Progressio 11). Nothing is lost in translation with Jesus who, merciful like the Father, died on the cross, pouring out the Holy Spirit as a fountain of Divine Mercy on us and on the whole world.
Photo credit: AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia
Building Bridges and Enriching Society
In particular, Pope Francis reminds us that meaningful dialogue leading to fruitful encounter is not possible without listening: “Listening allows us to get things right, and not simply to be passive onlookers, users or consumers. Listening also means being able to share questions and doubts, to journey side by side, to banish all claims to absolute power and to put our abilities and gifts at the service of the common good.” In the way Jesus listened to His disciples on the road to Emmaus, responding to them in love and mercy, the Holy Father says “communication has the power to build bridges, to enable encounter and inclusion, and thus enrich society.”
Yet Jesus has told us: “Amen, amen, I say unto you, whoever believes in Me will do the works that I do, and will do greater ones than these…” (John 14:12). Indeed, we have marvellous things at our disposal i.e. social media, the Internet etc that the Church sees as “gifts of God, which in His providential design, unite men in brotherhood and so help them to cooperate with His plan for their salvation (Communio et Progressio 22).”
The VITA Launch
In conjunction with the WCD Golden Jubilee last year, ArchComms launched VITA (Volunteers in the Archdiocese) – to harness the power of modern media and social communications to proclaim the Good News, not just in the real world, but also in the digital world (which the Pope calls) “a public square, a meeting place”.
If you are interested in listening and sharing, and putting your abilities and gifts as at the service of the Truth and God’s plan for the world, and would like to be part of a vibrant, missionary and evangelising Church, communicating mercy “in a broken, fragmented and polarised world” and helping to “create a healthy, free and fraternal closeness between the children of God and all our brothers and sisters in the one human family”, we welcome you to join us in this mission of evangelising to the multitudes!