The Church recently observed the 48th World Communications Day. It is remarkable to consider how rapidly communication has changed over the course of the last half-century. We have gone from black and white TV’s to iPhones, Twitter and Instagram.
Pope Francis commented on how the Internet and the new media can be truly good, and a gift from God, but at the same time, he called our attention to the reality that information is often communicated to us so rapidly that we scarcely take the time to appropriately reflect upon it. Being “connected” can often have the effect of isolating us from each other, leaving us in a virtual world of Web-relationships but not truly growing in a personal way or as a community. Far from being negative, however, about the progress of social communication, the Pope spoke quite positively and simply, reminding us “that community is ultimately a human rather than a technological achievement.”
Pope Francis offered a few suggestions on how that goal could be more fully reached: By taking time to be with others and creating silent space to listen; having patience to understand people who are different from ourselves; appreciating more fully the richness of the Catholic faith in marriage, family and our vision of the human person.
Perhaps the Holy Father’s message could be summed up by saying that all of our communication should seek to discover the image of God in all of those we are connected to. After all, the Sacred Scriptures exhort us to “Seek His face,” not His Facebook.