Be salt of the earth and light of the world

Delegates of the Fourth Philippine Conference on New Evangelization who attended the New Media workshop were encouraged to be the salt of the earth and light of the world as they take part in building a communion of one heart and soul.

Fr. Roy Bellen, Second Commissioner of the Social Commissions Ministry and Director of the Office of Communications of the Archdiocese of Manila delivered this message to the delegates on how powerful the use of new media is.

Fr. Bellen who is also the Vice President for Operations of TV Maria and Radio Veritas reminded the participants to take good advantage of social media in spreading the Word of God.

“Please share all the good things that the Church has been doing these past years now. Be proud of your faith. Be proud of being a Catholic.”

In a world of rapid changes in communication, Fr. Bellen stressed the different uses of new media in the new evangelization.  He cited that the internet is the latest and most powerful media outlet that has progressively eliminated time and space and obstacles to communication. It is very influential for it has a vast and diverse audience.

Quoting Pope Benedict saying, “We all have become consumers and operators of social communication in this era of globalization,” Fr. Bellen explained that social media can either be used for mass information or misinformation.

He also gave importance on the use of social media as a tool for manipulation of public opinion for the benefit of a certain entity through an organized social troop in many countries. This social troop does its operation by commenting in social media posts and stirring the people’s emotions through emotive videos and posts. This troop also attacks an individual online using bots and makes the individual thinks he is athwart.

However, Fr. Bellen expressed hope in spite of the challenges the new media is facing right now. 

“We should organize ourselves,” he said. 

He asked the participants to break the bad habit of “Kanya-kanya System” that divides the communion among Catholics. 

Fr. Bellen also reiterated the importance of education on the proper use of media through formations and seminars. He encouraged the people to patronize the media platforms of the Archdiocese such as TV Maria, Radio Veritas and the Office of Social Communications.

At the end of his talk titled New Media and Evangelization: Expanding the Horizons of Hope held at the Albertus Magnus building of the University of Santo Tomas, he quoted a verse from the Gospel of Matthew saying, “Do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.”

Mr. Edwin Lopez, Regional Manager for Asia Pacific Region of Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) was also one the speakers for New Media.

Aside from New Media, PCNE4 offered different concurrent sessions such as: Family, New Movements, Ecology, School, Social Justice, Parish/BEC, Catechist, Intercultural, and Youth.

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