John Paul II Says Media Professionals Are Called to Be "Agents of Peace"

On World Communications Day

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VATICAN CITY, JUNE 1, 2003 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II says the mass media must be means to promote peace, and communicators are called to be agents of reconciliation.

Addressing several thousand pilgrims gathered today in St. Peter’s Square before the praying of the Regina Caeli, the Pope noted that it was World Communications Day.

On this occasion, at the Pope’s request, the theme of the World Day was “The Means of Social Communication at the Service of Authentic Peace, in the Light of ‘Pacem in Terris,'” in commemoration of John XXIII’s 1963 encyclical.

In the current world situation, it “is all the more important to reflect on the role of the mass media in the construction of a peaceful world, founded on truth, justice, love and liberty,” said John Paul II.

“Indeed, may the means of social communication make a valid contribution to peace, pulling down the barriers of mistrust, encouraging understanding and mutual respect and, in addition, fostering reconciliation and mercy,” he said.

The Holy Father emphasized that it is “in virtue of their vocation and of their profession that mass media professionals are also called to be agents of peace.”

The Pope concluded by hoping that the feast of the Ascension, which was celebrated today in many countries, may awaken in believers “the desire for heaven, our eternal homeland.”

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