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Vietnam Catholics told to become communicators of truth

Catholics must encourage human and spiritual values through communication as a way of evangelization

Members of the communication committee in Ho Chi Minh City Archdiocese attend a meeting in February.

Members of the communication committee in Ho Chi Minh City Archdiocese attend a meeting in February. (Photo: tgpsaigon.net)

Published: May 27, 2022 10:15 AM GMT

Updated: June 02, 2022 04:30 AM GMT

Bishops in Vietnam have said that truth is the primary aim of communication and without it people were being duped and exploited by fake news and lurid headlines.

Bishop Joseph Nguyen Tan Tuoc, head of the social communication commission of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Vietnam (CBCV), said real communication must be based on some standards and should proclaim the Good News.

If not, communication will cause confusion and suspicion among readers and viewers, the 63-year-old prelate of Phu Cuong said at the Feast of the Ascension of Jesus Christ, the patron of writers and journalists, on May 26.

“Last year I published a letter calling on local people to work together to support Covid-19 victims and then I saw it published with the headline ‘A diocese becomes an epicenter,’” he recalled.

The most fundamental need of people is to be heard, respected and loved, he said while adding that people have the ability to communicate with one another and listen to God's call.

“Real communication aims at bringing all people together in love and communion to share their joys and sadness,” Bishop Tuoc said.

“Catholics need to perform their Christian duties when they take part in communication to encourage human and spiritual values as a way to evangelization"

Bishop Peter Nguyen Van Kham of My Tho, a member of the Rome-based Pontifical Council for Social Communications, said in the present digital age everybody was actively posting messages, posts, clips and photographs on social media.

The prelate, who is the secretary-general of the CBCV, called on Catholics to ask themselves if their posts on social media foster communion or provoke division, hatred and tension.

“Catholics need to perform their Christian duties when they take part in communication to encourage human and spiritual values as a way to evangelization,” he said.

He suggested the communication committees from the country’s 27 dioceses make contact with, meet and listen to individual communicators and those from other faiths to serve the purpose of evangelization.

Youths, women and religious should be encouraged to take part in church communication, Bishop Kham said, adding that for communication to become better and more effective more people must participate in the process.

Catholics in his diocese were scattered in the three provinces of Dong Thap, Long An and Tien Giang and needed to know and share church information while supporting one another in communion through various means of communication.

Many dioceses throughout Vietnam plan to hold meetings for Catholic communicators to commemorate World Communications Day on May 29.

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