Archbishop Eamon Martin has paid tribute to journalists who gave their lives in search of the truth as he presented the Pope’s message for World Communications Day 2021.
In a video message published ahead of Sunday 16 May, the archbishop introduced some of the key themes of the Pope’s message for World Communications Day on the theme “Come and See” (Jn 1:46). Communicating by Encountering People Where and as They Are.
The archbishop said, “Good media and journalism likewise invites us to “Come and See”. The internet for example brings to our doorsteps events that are happening all over the world and enables us to share them with others. Of course there is also the risk of misinformation and fake news. All the more reason, then, for people us to be responsible and authentic online and to be witnesses of the truth.
“Pope Francis acknowledges in his message the courage and commitment of journalists and other media professionals who often risk their lives helping us to learn the reality of life around the world today. They beam onto our mobile devices and into our living rooms the hardships facing countless people around the world, like persecution, oppression, poverty, war and injustice. In recent times, they have helped us to see first hand way that the Covid19 pandemic has been impacting people not just here at home but also in the poverty-stricken villages of Asia, Latin America and Africa.”
Speaking about the role of journalists, Archbishop Martin said, “I’m conscious today of the work of brave journalists here in Ireland like Lyra McKee, who have lost their lives while seeking to uncover and report the truth. I think also of the two Spanish journalists who were killed last month in Burkina Faso along with the Irish conservationist, Rory Young.
Concluding his video message, Archbishop Martin said, “Every media tool has its value in handing on the faith, but what really impresses others is a personal witness to faith, hope and charity. That is the challenge that faces all of us – to communicate our love for Jesus by encountering others, where they are and as they are, and inviting them to “Come and See”. God bless you in this mission, and may truth guide all those who are working in media and journalism here in Ireland.”