Some history of Christians in using media
January 30th, 2010

“Pope Benedict XVI’s surprising message for this year’s World Day of Communications encouraged Catholic priests to use every means of communications to spread the Gospel. Amen.” This is the lede to an On Faith column today in the Washington Post, written by a priest, James Martin, S.J., who is culture editor of America magazine. He sketches in his piece how Christians have used and invented communication methodology over the centuries and, since the beginning:

But guess what? That’s where people are congregating today and if Catholics want to emulate Jesus they should remember that he went out to see people, rather than simply letting them come to him. (He did some of the latter, but much more of the former.) The history of Christianity is in large part the history of the church using the latest media, sometimes even inventing media, to evangelize.

It starts at the beginning. In the Gospels, Jesus of Nazareth is peripatetic in the extreme, always moving from one town to the other, going to where the people are. (And for anyone who loudly laments the “speed” or “immediacy” of the new media, and prefer the slower–and therefore, theoretically, more reflective and so better–pace of the older forms, they should remember that Jesus often does things “immediately,” a word used over 40 times in the Gospel of Mark.) . . .

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