JUBILEE OF JOURNALISTS
THE PRESIDENT OF THE
Sunday, 4 June 2000
It is a great joy for us Catholic journalists, gathered in Rome, from all corners of the world, to celebrate the Great Jubilee together. On this occasion, we are reminded of who we essentially are, followers of Jesus Christ, even as we respond to our vocation as journalists.
The challenge that communicators face as the Church enters the new millennium is indeed immense, not least, because every human endeavour reflects human communication in one form or another.
This task becomes all the more urgent and necessary as our world experiences a continuing revolution in social communications.
To stimulate some thoughts so as to provide possible solutions to challenges our new age brings to us, we looked at a few priorities that will engage the Church as we enter the new millennium. (1) We stressed that the print media in an electronic age will always have an important role. (2) Echoing your constant call to journalists, we stressed the importance of the freedom of the press in communicating the truth while, at the same time, respecting people's right to privacy. Truth, quoting you Holy Father, is "to bring people together and enrich their lives, not isolate and exploite". (3) We said that the particular role of all Christian journalists in the new age we are entering is to be totally inserted into society just like "leaven in the dough".
The challenges can be summed up on one question: If the Christian journalist ceased to exist, would it make any real difference to society and to the world?
In carrying out our duties as Catholic journalists, Holy Father, we have often been inspired by your words and deeds. We are indeed proud to have such a great leader.