Cardinal Pietro Parolin said that “literacy is essential to the mastery of technologies and their use” in a message to the participants of International Literacy Day on September 8, 2017 at the UNESCO headquarters.
Writing on behalf of Pope Francis, the Cardinal said that the theme chosen for this year’s celebrations “Literacy in a Digital World”, is a theme that deserves strong support. He noted that the world has benefitted from the technological advances.
However, he warned that “while digital development offers new possibilities for evolution, it can also lead to the marginalization of people with limited access to the digital world.”
In his speech for the 50th anniversary of the encyclical Populorum Progressio, on April 4, 2017, the Pope explained that integral development meant “integrating the different peoples of the Earth” in a concern for solidarity that “integrates all the elements that contribute to it “. And he stressed: “Nobody always means relationship and not individualization, affirms inclusion and not exclusion, dignity unique and inviolable and not exploitation, freedom and not constraint.”
In her statement, Friends of the Holy See to UNESCO quote the words of the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova: “In the world, 750 million adults lack the most basic reading and in writing. Almost 264 million children and young people are not in school. International studies also show that a large proportion of the world’s adults and young people, including those in developed countries, do not possess the basic digital skills needed to be fully integrated into our societies and the world of work. “.