Information Age Needs Christ, Says Archbishop Foley

Vatican Official Addresses Convention on Church and Technology

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MONTERREY, Mexico, APRIL 3, 2003 (Zenit.org).- A Vatican official appealed to the faithful and to media and information-technology professionals to make Christ present in today's informed society.



"How can the Church of Christ make itself heard by the modern spirit, so proud of its accomplishments and at the same time so concerned about the future of the human family?" asked Archbishop John Foley, president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications.

His posed that question Wednesday when inaugurating the continental congress on the Church and information technology (IT), being held here through Saturday.

He said that the Church is faced with a cultural battle, which suggests various models of the human person, society and values.

Given this reality, "the Church cannot and must not let the 'face of Christ' be absent from this scene," he said. "It has the mission to witness by word and deeds to the best news that man can receive."

Internet has posed the serious challenge of the so-called digital gap, given that only 7% of the world's population has access to this means, and half of them are in the United States, Canada, Europe and Japan, he added.

In their ideologies, some international organizations seek to work for "digital integration," affirming human and democratic rights. However, according to Archbishop Foley, this cannot be accomplished solely on the basis of technology and economics, as the one who acts in today's informed society is the human person.

Today's informed society would be empty if it was unaware of the human, ethical and spiritual factors that sustain it, the archbishop said.

In referring to the objectives of the congress, Archbishop Foley explained to the representatives of 25 European and American countries that "we are here to get to know one another, to talk, to listen to one another and together to make that leap forward, to which John Paul II invited us in 'Novo Millennio Ineunte' -- to act in harmony, cooperation, as a network, watching to see where it is opportune to direct our efforts."

He added: "We are open to the Holy Spirit to put technological instruments at the service of the human person, of communities, and of communion and progress."