My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,
Each year, DeSales Media Group sponsors a celebration of World Communications Day with a conference inviting members of the Diocese to explore how they can become better communicators of their faith. This year, this day coincides with the celebration of Pentecost where the initial communication of faith was made by the Holy Spirit who set the Apostles forth.
This year, World Communication Day fell on Wednesday, May 13, and its theme was based on Pope Francis’ message for the 49th World Communications Day, “Communicating the Family: A Privileged Place of Encounter with the Gift of Love.”
Our keynote speaker was Dr. Austen Ivereigh, journalist and author of “The Great Reformer: Francis and the Making of a Radical Pope,” which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. This unauthorized biography of our Holy Father traces his development from simple Jesuit to the Office of Supreme Pontiff.
Mr. Ivereigh gives a historical perspective which assists us in understanding the complex personality and sometimes inscrutable actions of our Holy Father. When we know a person’s history, we are much better able to understand what they say and how they act. According to “The Great Reformer,” Pope Francis underwent successive transformations – first as a Jesuit, then as Jesuit Provincial and finally as Archbishop of Buenos Aires. His love for the poor and his dedication to pastoral work emerge from his life of total dedication to his priestly mission. It is a book worth reading.
This year’s World Communication Day conference hosted interesting workshops that gave us tangible tools to become better communicators. There was also a Spanish track for the Spanish-speaking, which is a major language group here in Brooklyn and Queens. Attendance reached nearly 400 registrants this year, the largest showing for the event since the Diocese of Brooklyn began hosting it 24 years ago.
Our Diocese has been blessed by the emergence of the DeSales Media Group, in that we have combined the communications mission of the Diocese by putting under one direction our weekly newspaper, The Tablet, our New Evangelization Television (NET TV), and our diocesan communication and technology efforts. Bringing together our various outlets and resources has proven to be the best use of these resources and has achieved a remarkable return.
This Pentecost eve was a busy one in our Diocese. At the Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph, the Charismatic renewal groups joined for a celebration welcoming the Holy Spirit on Pentecost eve. I, myself, invited the Neocatecumenal Way community members in our Diocese to an 8 p.m. Vigil Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of St. James. The unique part of this Pentecost celebration of the Eucharist was the proclamation of the seven Pentecost vigil readings. We cannot dedicate enough time to assimilating God’s Word, especially as it relates to the Pentecost event which opened the Church to the world in order to communicate the Good News.
As the Church puts out into the deep during this Pentecost, on the anniversary of the birth of the Church, join me in praying for the success of all of our evangelization and communication efforts that they may be guided by the Spirit to fulfill God’s will, especially here in Brooklyn and Queens.