Engaging Faith: Practical lesson ideas and activities for Catholic Educators

October 30, 2008

A Papal Blog?


At the world Synod of Bishops in Vatican City, which was held a few weeks ago, Agnes Kam Leng Lam, a Chinese laywoman and President of the Catholic Biblical Association of Hong Kong, made the interesting suggestion that the Pope begin his own blog. She invited the Pope “to open a multi-language blog to shepherd today's world” that would include “daily scriptural verse with simple reflection, brief text and plentiful images.” According to the Zenit news agency, Ms. Lam’s suggestion brought smiles to many in the audience. Nevertheless, the idea of the Pope having his own blog may not be as unlikely as it may first appear. The Vatican already has a state-of-the-art web site which includes hundreds of speeches, addresses, homilies, and other documents from the popes of the last two centuries. Furthermore, the pope would not be the first Catholic prelate to have his own blog; Boston’s Cardinal Archbishop Sean O’Malley maintains a very informative and entertaining blog chronicling his travels and activities with brief reflections and many photographs, some of which are taken by the Cardinal himself, sometimes on his cell phone! At the same time, while the church and its leaders are making good use of contemporary media technology to spread the gospel, the church also warns its faithful about the potential dangers of such technology. In 2002, the Pontifical Council for Social Communications issued two documents about the Internet, Ethics in Internet and The Church and Internet. These documents outline the church’s view of the internet against the background of the church’s historical teaching on the “media of social communication.” The latter document cites Pope Pius XII’s encyclical Miranda Prorsus, it which it was affirmed that the Church sees the media of social communication “as ‘gifts of God' which, in accordance with his providential design, unite men in brotherhood and so help them to cooperate with his plan for their salvation."

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