15 May 2018

Pope Francis invites communication professionals to promote a journalism of peace

On the 52nd world day for Social Communications Pope Francis put forward the theme The truth will set you free (John 8, 32). Fake news and journalism of peace. This is a topical theme also in the Holy Land.

Actuality and events

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In his message on the 52nd world day for Social Communications, Pope Francis observes that in order to be faithful to the project of God communication must become a space for the construction of what is good.

Today however we witness the phenomenon on of fake news which takes on great visibility.

Br FRANCESCO PATTON, ofm
Custos Of the Holy Land
“Clearly all journalists, precisely because they are providing a service which requires the ability to delve deep and to critique, cannot make do with a superficial opinion nor facts at face value. Truth always requires an effort in research whether this is a life path or simply the checking of sources. It is fundamental that a journalist understands his or her service as one promoting truth”.

The Pope proposes a journalism of peace which, the Pontiff underlines, is not “do-goodsim”. This is a topical reflection even for the media of the Holy Land.

Br FRANCESCO PATTON, ofm
Custos Of the Holy Land
“In his message the Pope states that this does not mean to promote “do-goodism” or to instrumentalise what is good. To offer good news means to foster hope and in the case of the Holy Land I would say that this is crucially important. Negative news so to speak - including true news - is already very much on offer in abundance by all other media. Actually this is probably the only news on offer”.

Among the means of communication of Custos: the Terra Santa review, the website and the Christian Media Center which communicate daily and show the beauty of the Land of the Fifth Gospel to the world.

ISSA BISHARA
Journalist of the Christian Media Centre, Arabic service

“As journalists we need to concentrate on topic and news which serve peace. In his call to foster a journalism of peace, Pope Francis reflects on a very deep vision of news and the role undertaken by journalists. All this is born out of his deep concern for the suffering of human beings caused by persecutions and at a time of increasing tyranny and phenomena of intolerance and extremism”.

Lurdinha Nunes
Christian Media Center
“The Christian media Center is born with the aim of narrating and announcing the Good News of the Gospel and what happens here. Therefore as well as conflict, fear and insecurity there is a beauty which needs to be shown. There is life in the Holy Land. As Mgr Pierbattista Pizzaballa - Custos of the Holy Land in 2008 – said in the year he undertook this brave initiative of founding the Christian media Center, we are here to tell a different story: that of the beauty of shrines with pilgrims from all over the world; the challenges in ecumenism and interreligious dialogue…it is a different story and sometimes it is drowned out by all the negative events taking place”.

In exact juxtaposition to fake news, or the spreading of what is only negative and violent content, journalism can be a tool for peace and a sign of hope!

Br FRANCESCO PATTON, ofm
Custos Of the Holy Land
“I believe it is crucial in order to foster hope that we shine light even on very small items of news which may be marginal to the mainstream media but which for us can be an indication of possible dialogue. They may represent a bridge we build as proof that peace can be erected not only in theory but through small actions and daily choices”.