Notable quotations from Pope John Paul II and official teachings of the Roman Catholic Church
The Great Jubilee ... must be an opportunity and a challenge for the Lord's disciples to bear witness in and through the media to the extraordinary, consoling Good News of our salvation... May the media give voice to Jesus Himself, clearly and joyously, with faith and hope and love.
Our duty to bear witness to the death and resurrection of Jesus and His saving presence in our lives is as real and pressing as was the duty of the first disciples. We must tell the good news to all who are willing to listen.
Direct, personal proclamation — one person sharing faith in the risen Lord with another — is essential; so are other traditional forms of spreading the word of God. But, ... proclamation today must take place also in and through the media.
The impact of the media in today's society can hardly be exaggerated... For many the experience of living is to a great extent an experience of the media... The proclamation of Christ must be part of this experience.
The Church must make energetic and skillful use of her own means of communications — books, newspapers, and periodicals, radio, television and other means. And Catholic communicators must be bold and creative in developing new media and methods of proclamation. But, as much as possible, the Church also must use the opportunities that are to be found in the secular media.
Often ... there is a need for a kind of "examination of conscience" on the part of the media, leading to a more critical awareness of a bias or lack of respect for people's religious and moral convictions.
Christian communicators should ... seek out ways to speak explicitly of Jesus crucified and risen, of His triumph over sin and death, in a manner suited to the medium used and to the capacities of the audience.
In order to witness to Christ it is necessary to encounter Him oneself and foster a personal relationship with Him through prayer, the Eucharist and sacramental reconciliation, reading and reflection on God's word, the study of Christian doctrine, and service to others. And always, if it is authentic, this will be the Spirit's work much more than our own.
To proclaim Christ in the media ... is not only a necessary part of the Church's evangelizing mission; it is also a vital, inspiring and hope-filled enrichment of the media's message.
(Message for World Communications Day [June 4, 2000], issued January 24, 2000)
Published by: Presentation Ministries, 3230 McHenry Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45211, (513) 662-5378, www.presentationministries.com