A hope hub

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Fr Mario Attard OFM Cap

Modern technology has its positive and healing side. Thanks to it people are connected with one another. They can share their hopes and their joys.

In his message to the World Congress for Catholic TV which took place in Madrid in 2006 Pope Benedict XVI emphasized that the Church must not be afraid to use technology to spread the good news. Speaking within thecontext of the Church’s celebration of the Year for Priests in 2010 Benedict XVI reiterated the importance that we priests be present in the digital communications area so as to carry out our ministry to and for the Word of God. He conveyed his reflections through his message for the 44th World Communications Day which had as its title The Priest and Pastoral Ministry in a Digital World: New Media at the Service of the Word.

“The spread of multimedia communications and its rich ‘menu of options’ might make us think it sufficient simply to be present on the Web, or to see it only as a space to be filled. Yet priests can rightly be expected to be present in the world of digital communications as faithful witnesses to the Gospel, exercising their proper role as leaders of communities which increasingly express themselves with the different ‘voices’ provided by the digital marketplace. Priests are thus challenged toproclaim the Gospel by employing the latest generation of audiovisual resources (images, videos, animated features, blogs, websites) which, alongside traditional means, can open up broad new vistas for dialogue, evangelization and catechesis. Using new communication technologies, priests can introduce people to the life of the Church and help our contemporaries todiscover the face of Christ. They will best achieve this aim if they learn, from the time of their formation, how to use these technologies in a competent and appropriate way, shaped by sound theological insights and reflecting a strong priestly spirituality grounded in constant dialogue with the Lord”.

Using the social communication media also means integrating every voice within society. This has been the point raised by Pope Francis for the 48th World Day of Social Communication in 2014. In that message the Holy Father said that “the age of globalization is making communication possible even in the most remote parts of the world, but it is also important ‘to use modern technologies and social networks in such a way as to reveal a presence that listens, converses and encourages’(Address of Pope Francis to participants at the Plenary Assembly of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, 21 September 2013), so that nobody is excluded”.

An interesting service wherein one feels spiritually cared for is that of the Way of Living. As many would already know this service provides the possibility that one receives a daily spiritual message on his and her mobile phone. It is not the first time that the messages one receives really coincide with what one is going through. Some may say it is pure chance. And they have every right to say that. But, for those who believe, these text messages are certainly not coincidences but God incidences!

I too have the joy of being subscribed to this Godly service. Some messages are so powerful that I have saved them on my mobile phone so that, from time to time, I would refer to them to give me courage as well as to offer them as a source of inspiration and hope to others. One such message is the following: “God is more interested in changing me than in changing my circumstances. They are there sometimes to help me grow in patience, love, understanding and other virtues”. Another one is this: “In your sadness and discouragement remember that you have someone that walks and cries with you – God. He will never abandon you, even if you reject Him and hate Him”. How life-giving are these messages! They are undoubtely gifts from heaven!

If you decide to subscribe to this hub of hope kindly send an empty message on this mobile number: 99045605. I encourage you that if you find these messages helpful please share this mobile number to those who, like you, are seeking a word of comfort, guidance and hope in their lives.

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