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Sr. Teresa Marcazzan: Church must embrace social media

Sr. Teresa Marcazzan, who belongs to the religious congregation of the Daughters of St. Paul (Paulines) has said that their founder Blessed James Alberione used to say, “If people do not come to Church, the Church must go where people are.”
Sr. Marcazzan was speaking to Vatican Radio’s English Africa Service, in Rome, not too long ago. She added, “People today are on Facebook, Twitter, and on phone sending messages to one another.” Just as Pope Francis, who uses social media regularly, Sr. Marcazzan believes that the Church must convincingly move to where people are.

Sr. Marcazzan is the Director of Pauline Publications Africa, based in Nairobi, Kenya. She has lived in Africa for the last 42 years. Among her many achievements is steering the committee that saw the publication of the ‘African Bible.’

Speaking on Vatican Radio’s English Africa radio programme, ‘Jubilee Year of Mercy,’ Sr. Marcazzan encouraged Africans to read the inspiring stories of African saints. “The lives of African saints and blesseds are beautiful examples of how to live the mercy of God,” she said.

Through their publications, the Pauline Sisters would continue to produce books and booklets that help readers expand their understanding of God as a merciful father, Sr. Marcazzan said. ‘We have to live and appreciate the joy that this Year of Mercy brings to us and as Pope Francis insists,’ she said, “we must always carry with us, the Bible, especially the pocket Bible.”

Sr. Marcazzan would like to see the Church embrace new media for the efficient spreading of the message of God’s mercy. “We can use these instruments to give good messages: ‘God is love, God is mercy,’ something short as the Pope often does … everyday short messages,” Sr. Marcazzan said.

Notwithstanding the importance of the print media to Africa, Sr. Marcazzan was quick to stress that radio, as a medium, in Africa was still a very powerful instrument at the disposal of the Church. Even as the Church moves into social media it must not neglect radio, she advised. She said radio spreads information to many people quickly and with great immediacy. “During this Jubilee Year of Mercy, radio and all media must be used to reinstate the language of mercy back into society,” she said.

 (Fr. Brian Nonde CMM/Vatican Radio) — Email: engafrica@vatiradio.va — (from Vatican Radio) 

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