Church should use the internet to proclaim the Gospel, clergy say

.- At the conclusion of the meeting in Rome entitled “The Church in Network 2.0,” promoted by the National Office for Social Communications and by the Information Services of the Bishops’ Conference of Italy, participants agreed that the Church should take greater advantage of the Internet in order to proclaim the Gospel.

After noting that the internet has exploded during the last 15 years, the L’Osservatore Romano quoted Archbishop Mariano Crociata, secretary general of the Bishops’ Conference of Italy, who said that the prevalence of the internet demands that the Church be present there.

In response to the challenges posed by the internet, Archbishop Crociata said there is a need for guidelines and norms to help “interpret this world.” He also stressed that the concrete existence of persons must never be ignored in the environment of the internet.

Father Domenico Pompili, director of the bishops’ National Office for Social Communications, said many of the challenges posed by the internet could also become opportunities for spreading the Gospel.  In this way, he added, “attentive to the development of instruments of communication, the Church manifests the need to make correct use of them.”

In the opinion of Adriano Fabris, professor of philosophy at the University of Pisa, the internet has the potential for “great opportunities” as well as great injustice, and that if “used with discernment, it can provide the occasion for new and more effective ministry.”

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