Pope to Continue "Fruitful Dialogue" With Media

Following in John Paul II's Footsteps

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VATICAN CITY, APRIL 25, 2005 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI told communicators and journalists that he wishes to continue the "fruitful dialogue" that Pope John Paul II helped to establish between the media and the Church.



The Pope dedicated his first public meeting with journalists to thank them for their work, including media coverage that extended from the last days of John Paul II and into the German-born Pontiff's first days as Bishop of Roman.

Some 5,000 journalists, photographers, and television cameramen from all over the world attended the audience Saturday held in Paul VI Hall.

Many were special correspondents, who are now returning to their countries after the official inauguration of Benedict XVI.

In his address, the Holy Father assured them that he wishes to continue the "fruitful dialogue" that John Paul II established between the media and the Church for over 26 years.

Quoting "The Rapid Development," the last apostolic letter written by John Paul II, the new Pope encouraged the Church to engage in "a sort of pastoral and cultural revision in order that it will be able to address the epochal change in which we are living," the age of communication.

Archbishop John Foley, president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, spoke on behalf of those present.

The Pope, the former Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, was received with a long standing ovation which would have continued but for the fact that he himself interrupted it.

The Holy Father greeted the audience in four languages -- Italian, French, English and German -- and concluded the meeting by inviting all to pray the Our Father.