Tuwing Ascension Sunday ipinagdiriwang din ang World Day of Communications. At bago sumapit ang araw na ito nagpapapalabas ng mensahe ang Santo Papa ukol sa napiling tema kung saan ngayong taon ang tema ay “New Technologies, New Relationships: Promoting a Culture of Respect, Dialogue and Friendship”.
Sa panahon ngayon kailangan ng simbahan na gumamit ng bagong teknolohiya sa pagpalaganap ng Ebanghelyo upang makasagot sa matinding pangangailangan na ang tao ay dapat makarinig ng Salita ng Diyos. Kaya naman dito sa ating parokya ay mayroong Multimedia Advocates for Creative Evangelization o MACE sa kadahilanang ito. At ang mga miyembro ng MACE ay hindi dapat tumigil sa paghahanap ng paraan upang lalong mailapit sa lahat ng uri ng tao ang Ebanghelyo. At ang mensahe ng Santo Papa ay patuloy na magiging hamon sa amin para sa pagtupad ng responsiblidad na ito.
Dapat lang isaalang-alang na ang komunikasyon ay isang two-way process. Hindi lang dapat ang simbahan ang laging nagbibigay ng impormasyon. Kailangan din nitong pakinggan ang gustong sabihin ng kanyang mga parokyano. Isang paraan ng paghikayat ng pagkakaroon ng komunikasyon ay ang hayaan ang mga tao na magpahayag din ng impormasyon. Ang komunidad ay dapat may input din para sa ikatatagumpay ng isang parokya. Nagbibigay ito ng implikasyon na dapat nating respetuhin at pakinggan ang mga tao. Kaya naman hindi rin lang puro galing o talino ang kailangan sa paghahatid ng impormasyon, ngunit higit sa lahat, kailangan ang mga miyembro ng MACE ay mayroon ding gabay ng
Ang mga sumusunod na artikulo ay ang mga opinyon at tugon ng mga kapwa ko MACE members sa hamon na hatid ng mensahe ng ating Santo Papa.
-Joy dela Cruz
It is evident that we are in the age of technology; that we are living in a digital world. In this regard, how can the Church utilize such resources to reach out and evangelize to peoples? In response to this, Pope Benedict XVI sends out a message about the 2009 World Day of Communication. The message conveys that the gifts of knowledge and information at our fingertips can be very effective ways of communicating with one another irregardless of distance, race, culture and religion. But these gifts can easily be tainted, abused and misused. That is why we, Christian believers and followers, are challenged to promote respect, dialogue and friendship; to encourage, specially the youth, to bring the witness of their faith through effective socialization in the various means of media and communication.
In response to the Pope’s challenge, (1) the Diocese of Cubao included evangelization through multimedia as part of the five-point priority agenda; and (2) our parish, the Resurrection of our Lord Parish (ROLP) have formed an organization, the Multimedia Advocates for Creative Evangelization (MACE) to cater to information technological needs. MACE is given a massive task to bring down to the community the Christian faith. For the past three years, MACE has already put into place programs that make use of technology to reach out to our community.
MACE is visible through the DLP projector operators in every Sunday mass, the frequent publication of SINAG RESUREKSYON (the parish’s official newsletter), digital capture of special events, publication of the souvenir program and sales of souvenir items and the worldwide web, www.rolppaltok.co.cc. These are just a glimpse of what technology can bring to our community, a tip of the iceberg, so to speak. But, I believe we can still strengthen this small and humble organization. I personally would highly encourage the use of the worldwide web as means of reaching out and evangelization. There must be constant updates on the website. A catechetical message or a homily related to Sunday gospels are bonus points for the website. Also, since MACE is part of the Formation Ministry, I envision scheduled film showing for children and for teenagers. A 15 to 30 minute film show with a bit of catechetical work can be an effective way teaching. These are just one or two of the many means of empowering communication and evangelization in our Paltok community. Go Amazing MACE!
Bilang isang MACE member, ang mensahe ng ating Santo Papa ay isang hamon para sa ating lahat upang gamitin natin ang makabagong teknolohiya sa makabuluhang paraan at ito ay ang pagpapalaganap ng Mabuting Balita. Nawa ay maging lakas at sandata natin ang mensahe ng ating Santo Papa upang mas dumami pa ang taong maglilingkod at sasampalataya sa Diyos. Huwag sanang gamitin ang media sa masama katulad ng pornograpiya at maling pagbabalita. Maging mensahero tayo ng ating Panginoon. Go MACERS!
New technologies have caused a lot of changes in our everyday lives especially in improving communication and human relationships. Because of it, we can communicate easily and fast to our loved ones, and strengthen human relationships through e-mails, social networks, cellphone, and the like. If not for the benefits of these new technologies, we still live a life full of hassles and difficulties. Marahil walang MRT o LRT na nagpapabilis sa pagpunta natin sa iba’t ibang lugar; wala ring telepono, cellphone o internet na maaaring magamit sa pakikipag-usap sa tao; at wala ring computer, fax machine o printer na nagpapabilis at nagsasa-ayos ng mga gawain sa opisina.
This is really a great gift for humanity and we, especially those who are serving in the church, must maximize the benefits it brings to us to enlighten everyone with the Word of God. Good thing the Diocese of Cubao has included in its 5-point priority agenda utilization of media in evangelization. Way ahead of this, our parish through the leadership of Fr. Ronald created an IT group (the Multimedia Advocates for Creative Evangelization or MACE) that will explore all possible means of proclaiming the Good News to the parishioners through different high tech gadgets like DLP projector and computer.
My fellow servants of the Lord, let us help the Pope to promote a culture of respect, dialogue, and friendship to everyone most especially to the people who are in need of our help and affection. Let us share His goodness to all through the use of modern technology.
Siguro kung buhay pa si St. Paul hanggang ngayon, ang Patron Saint ng MACE, high tech na rin siya sa pagpapahayag ng Salita ng Diyos.
-Jordeene Sheex Lagare
I must say that as a Catholic, it is very touching to hear a Christian leader addresses the benefits and challenges of responsible media.
Pope Benedict is absolutely correct in what he shared in his message. He addresses the digital generation and offers us all the ideas of how to use new technologies for the good of everybody. There are many practical benefits of the new media and technologies that the Pope gave, he points out that the digital communication ultimately reflects our fundamental human desire to relate to each other.
Pope Benedict encourages us all to be a good example to others in promoting the culture of respect, dialogue and friendship. We must always value and keep the importance of communication especially in our community nowadays.
-Kristine Joy Aquino
Back in the days when telegrams were the fastest means of sending urgent messages, words cost like gold. Telegram sentences made up of carefully chosen and counted words were separated by the trademark STOP. It didn’t take long before telegraphic transfers were taken over by pagers or beepers, then by analog cellular phone calls, then by the digital mobile phones and now by digital video phones. Who would have known then that the system of sending messages via computers, once used only in top-secret military operations, would spread rapidly to offices, schools, businesses, and homes to replace “snail mail”? Telegrams are now things of the past; we now have short messages or what we call “texts.” Nowadays, you hardly can find anyone who still refers to the “web” as the spiders’ habitat and to “surfing” as a water sport.
Indeed, the world of digital technology has enabled high-speed transmission of messages that have forged friendships, giving the very young and the young-at-heart access to information and knowledge across this whole “wired” world. It has never been easier and more convenient to maintain contacts and family ties, so important especially for Filipinos overseas. The Holy Father is right on target in saying how digital communication technology “responds to a fundamental desire of people as human beings to communicate and relate to each other.” People need to stay connected and through friendships, grow and develop as persons.
Digital communication technology also has its risks and hazards, as the Holy Father is sharp to point out. Fleeting, shallow friendships (with one click it is so easy to “add” as well as “delete” a contact) can dominate relationships marked respect, understanding and genuine care. That the technology could create an “obsession with virtual, rather than real, connectedness” is always possible. More and more young people are taking to texting and online chatting or networking like fish to water with their “almost spontaneous affinity for the new means of communication.” When they discover that distance is no excuse for not keeping in touch with friends, mobile phones become prized possessions young people can’t leave home without. The old-fashioned telephone, now dubbed as “landline,” used to pin us down to a particular place. Nowadays, people are always moving, on the go. With mobile phones, one can still connect with people even as they move. No wonder “wireless landline” phones are gaining usefulness. With the technology’s “undoubted capacity to foster contact between people,” people are no longer isolated from each other. Yet in a way, some people become isolated from real social or face-to-face interaction.
What does the Holy Father mean when he enjoins those who are well-versed with digital technology to proclaim the Gospel and bear witness to the faith?
Proclaiming the Gospel, for me, means two things. One, it is to bring the Word of God expressed in many forms, closer to people. Once in a while, inspirational text messages quoting passages from the Bible can really lift up tired souls or clear troubled minds. But let us spare each other messages that warn of misfortunes and evils that will befall anyone who ignores or refuse to send the same message to at least 30 other unsuspecting mobile phone contacts. The web has a wealth of resources on the lives of the saints, reflections on gospel readings, prayer guides, and so forth, if only one makes time for them. And here in our own parish there are services done by young and enthusiastic users of digital technology to help people participate more actively in Mass by having the songs sung and prayers recited magnified twenty-fold via computers and DLP projectors (making the Manila paper, transparencies, and overhead projectors quite obsolete). This is a big help also to make the Mass songs and responses really sink in.
Spreading the Gospel also means witnessing it in our own lives in the quality, sincerity and depth of our friendships and care for one another. In reminding us of the need to also “focus on the quality of the content that is put into circulation” using digital communication technology, the Holy Father also urges us to use technology responsibly. Thanks to the gadgets and equipment we have at our disposal, we are to herald the Gospel of Christian love built on respect and care for the person at the other end of the phone line, the recipient of our text messages, the surfer or fellow blogger on the web seeking truth and guidance, fellow churchgoers seeking the solace and grace of prayers said communally and even friends outside of our circle of contacts for whom mobile phones are an unaffordable luxury. “Loads” to send messages and make voice calls may now be cheaper these days, with all those “unli” promos galore. But as in the days of telegrams, words are still as expensive as gold. They must be carefully used to communicate only what we truly mean to say to persons sincerely respected and cared for, as created in God’s image. Let us use the technology to reach out to people in “all the ends of the earth,” especially the “disadvantaged and the vulnerable,” that through our acts of concern for them and words of consolation and hope, they may feel that God has not forsaken them.
-Angelli F. Tugado