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Saturday, 30 September 2017

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Pope to focus on "fake news" in message for World Communications Day 2018‎
(Vatican Radio)  Pope Francis will focus on the harmful effects of fake news against journalism for peace, in his message for peace for World Communications Day next year.  "" The truth will set you free" (Jn 8:32). Fake news and journalism for peace, " the Pope announced with a post on Twitter (@Pontifex) on Friday. World Communications Day, the only worldwide celebration called for by the Second Vatican ‎Council ‎‎( "Inter Mirific a", 1963), is marked in most countries, on the recommendation of the bishops of ‎the ‎world, on the Sunday before Pentecost, which in 2018 will fall on May 13.   In some countries, the day is marked as the solemnity of Ascension. The announcement of the ‎theme is traditionally made on Sept. 29 , the feast of the Archangels Michael, ‎Raphael and Gabriel, with ‎ Gabriel being designated the patron saint of telecommunications .  The Holy ‎Father's message for World ‎Communications Day is traditionally published in conjunction with January ‎‎24 , feast of St. Francis de ‎Sales , patron of journalists, to allow bishops' conferences, diocesan offices and ‎communications ‎organizations sufficient time to prepare audiovisual and other materials for national ‎and local ‎celebrations. ‎ ‎ The first World Communications Day was observed on May 7, 1967, under the pontificate of Blessed Pope Paul VI, who wanted to draw attention to the communications media and the enormous power they have for cultural transformation.  Next year's observance will the 52nd edition. Church's contribution Commenting on the theme of next year's World Communications Day, the Vatican's Secretariat for Communication said that false information contributes to creating and fueling strong polarization of opinions. This often consists in distortion of facts , with possible "repercussions on individual ‎and collective behaviours."  In a situation in which social media groups, institutions and the political world are reacting to this phenomenon, the Secretariat said, "the Church would like make its contribution by proposing a ‎ reflection on the causes, logic and consequences of misinformation in the media and helping to promote ‎professional journalism, always seeking the truth , and thus a journalism of peace that promotes ‎understanding among people .‎"   (from Vatican Radio)...
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Pope at Mass celebrates archangels who accompany us on our journey
(Vatican Radio) Celebrating the feast day of the three archangel s, Michael, Gabriel and Raphael, Pope Francis said we share their vocation "cooperating together in God's salvific design". Speaking during the homily at Mass in the Casa Santa Marta, he reflected on the Collect for the Day in which we sing the Lord's praises in the sight of angels. Listen to the report by Linda Bordoni : Angels, Pope Francis said, are masters of contemplation: they serve and contemplate the Lord who has sent them to accompany us on the path of life.  Michael protects us against evil    Michael, Gabriel and Raphael in particular, he continued, have an important role in our journey towards salvation. "Michael, he said, is the one who fights against the devil" and protects humanity from the snares of evil. He protects us against the serpent that seduces us, makes us fall and then accuses us before God claiming us as his own. "Michael, the Pope explained, was asked by the Lord to fight the devil" and he helps us resist temptation on our earthly journey towards heaven. Gabriel brings the good news Gabriel – another archangel we celebrate today – is the one who "brings the good news"; he's the one who announced to Zachariah the forthcoming birth of John the Baptist and to Mary and Joseph, the birth of Jesus. "Gabriel too accompanies us and helps us on our journey when we "forget" the Gospel."  He reminds us that "Jesus came to save us". Raphael accompanies us The third archangel we celebrate today, the Pope said, is Raphael: "he walks with us taking care of us on our journey and helping us not take the wrong step". These are our companions, Francis concluded, at our and at God's service. And he prayed: "Michael: help us in our battle – each of us has a battle to fight in our lives; Gabriel: bring us news, bring us the good news of salvation; Raphael: take us by the hand and lead us forward without taking the wrong turning. Always walking forward, but with your help!"           (from Vatican Radio)...
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Pope meets Italian mayors, municipalities
(Vatican Radio)  The image of a city that the New Jerusalem evokes is one of a human society that is based on true solidarity, whereas where envy, unbridled ambitions and spirit of adversity grow, it condemns itself to the violence of chaos. The common good Pope Francis made the point on Saturday while addressing some 300 members of the National Association of Italian Municipalities (ANCI) in the Vatican.   The model of the city or town that the Pope proposed to them is one that "does not permit a one-way traffic of exasperated individualism," that does not tolerate the "blind alleys of corruption " that breeds disintegration , and where there are no "walls of the privatization of public spaces, where the "us" is but a rhetoric ploy that "masks the interest of a few ." The Pope urged the town and city officials to have "the passion for the common good" that grants each one and his family the possibility to realize themselves and open themselves in communion with others .  Solidarity and human brotherhood Speaking about areas that lack quality services he said it is where new " pockets of poverty and marginalization " breed.  "This," he said, "is where the city moves on a double lane ."  "On the one hand there is a highway of those who are overly cared for and on the other there are the " bottlenecks of the poor and unemployed , the numerous families and immigrants who have no one to count on."  "We must not accept these plans that divide and make the life of one be the death of the other," the Pope said, adding, "the struggle itself ends up destroying any sense of solidarity and human brotherhood." Learn from the poor The Pope thus urged the city and town administrations to visit the urban, social and existential peripheries under them, saying the "point of view of the least is the best school that will make us understand the true needs"  and their solutions .  While making us feel the " pulse of injustice " they will also show us the way to eliminate it and create a community where each one is recognized as a person and citizen with rights and duties.   The Pope said that if a mayor is close to his people, things go well always. Migrants, refugees Speaking about the issue of Italy's massive problem with migrants and refugees, the Pope said he can well understand the difficulties of the nation grappling with an economic crisis, local communities' unpreparedness and inadequate measures to deal with the emergencies.  He said this difficulty can be overcome by offering spaces for personal encounter and knowledge of one another .  He commended initiatives that "promote the culture of encounter, mutual exchange of artistic and cultural riches, and the knowledge of the places and communities of origin of the new arrivals."  Pope Francis expressed satisfaction that many city and town administrations have adopted the "the good practice of welcome and integration, with encouraging results" which he said should be spread wide.  (from Vatican Radio)...
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