Pope Benedict XVI has added an eleventh commandment; thou shalt blog, as he urged Catholic priests the world over to become leaders not only of physical communities but online ones, too, and get involved in blogging and other forms of new media.
Ahead of the 4th World Communication Day this May, Pope Benedict XVI published a message on the official Vatican website, drawing attention to “the important and sensitive pastoral area of digital communications”.
The Catholic church and new media
Quoting Saint Paul, “Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel”, the Pope said that modern media – images, videos, animated features, blogs and websites – played an important role in the Catholic church engaging with society and encouraging dialogue at a wider level.
“Priests present in the world of digital communications should be less notable for their media savvy than for their priestly heart, their closeness to Christ," he said.
In what he called today’s "digital continent", the Pope said the Catholic church can come into contact with not only its own followers but also “followers of other religions, non-believers and people of every culture”.
By Marie Boran
Photo: Pope Benedict XVI