The Paulines Institute of Communications in Asia (PICA) organized an online celebration of 55th World Communications Day last May 15, reflecting on the Message of Pope Francis, Come and See. Communicating by Encountering People Where and as They Are.
Three speakers expounded on the Pope’s Message. The first, Chair of the Episcopal Commission on Social Communication Bishop Marcelino Maralit explained, “Come and See: An Invitation to Personal Experience and Discernment to know the Truth”. He pointed out the difficulty to distinguish truth from false if we are not critical enough and may use this information, which can be dangerous.
The second, Society of St. Paul Fr. Norman Peña illustrated “Face Unmasked: True Encounter – The End of Digital Connections”. He emphasized Pope Francis’ recommendation that connectivity should lead us to true encounter, and warned us of fake news as distorters of connection.
The third, Broadcast Journalist and Writer Howie Severino shared “The Struggle for Enlightenment and the Mission of Journalists”. He was emphatic in recommending that we all need to crave for empowerment and the truth.
More than one thousand people followed the live streaming through the Paulines Facebook pages, while about forty participated through zoom. The forum was intended to help people reflect on the message of Pope Francis for World Communications Day, which is celebrated on the Feast of the Ascension every year. The Pope gives a yearly theme with his message that will enable us to see closely the problems of society from the perspective of communication. – Sr. Consolata