· The Pope for the fourth national congress on the pastoral ministry of social communications in Brazil ·
“In the digital world proclaiming the Gospel must be followed by an offer to meet Christ in a real and transforming way”. Pope Francis expressed this desire in a message — signed by Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin — to participants of the fourth national congress on pastoral ministry in social communications (PASCOM) in Brazil. The conference began on Thursday, 24 July, at the Marian Shrine of Aparecida with the theme “Communication, challenges, opportunities to evangelize in the digital age”. In addition, the congress is linked to the second national seminar of young communicators.
The purpose of both meetings, which will conclude on Sunday, 27 July, is to research new ways to create and motivate agents to pastoral work in communications in Brazil. The meeting, in which bishops, priests, religious and lay people are participating, is being held on the anniversary of Pope Francis' visit to Brazil. The Holy Father went there last year to celebrate World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro. The Pontiff added a stop in Aparecida to the visit so that he could pray where he once had six years before as Cardinal-Archbishop of Buenos Aires. He had gone to Aparecida to participate in the fifth General Conference of the Latin American and Caribbean Bishops' Conference (CELAM), which was held in May 2007.
Pope Bergoglio touched on his experience last year in Brazil, when — quoting his homily at Mass on 27 July in the Cathedral — he said: “We cannot keep ourselves shut up in parishes, in our communities, in our parish or diocesan institutions, when so many people are waiting for the Gospel! To go out as ones sent. It is not enough simply to open the door in welcome because they come, but we must go out through that door to seek and meet the people!”.
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