Jakarta, Day of Social Communications: mission online
Jakarta (AsiaNews) - Next week the Diocese of Manokwari-Sorong, in the province of West Papua, the easternmost of Indonesia, will host an event related to the Day of Social Communications promoted the Indonesian Bishops Conference (KWI Kosmos).
It is part of a project that started some years ago with the aim to "strengthen the moral" and "missionary journey" - and above all through the use of media and social networks - among Catholics on the archipelago. Not only radio and television, but also Internet, Facebook and Twitter are increasingly important tools in proclaiming the Gospel.
Speaking to AsiaNews Fr. Kamilus Pantus recounts the work of activists and experts in social communication who, in recent months, have promoted various "initiatives" in many dioceses in the country. The priest, a native of the diocese Weetebula island of Sumba (province of East Nusa Tenggara, NTT), describes the enthusiastic participation of activists, students, catechists and youth. They are the first, he adds, to have what is called "the ability to leverage social media to proclaim the Word of God."
Two months ago Fr. Pantus organized a seminar on journalism in the diocese of Atambua, which was attended by dozens of people, in particular young people and university students. The classes were taught by members of www.sesawi.net the newsite of the Indonesian Catholic Church. A similar initiative was also held in the diocese of Yogyakarta in central Java. "They are of great value to young Catholics - says the priest - who are interested in the use of modern media to spread the Gospel."
The Diocese of Purwokerto and the Archdiocese of Semarang, in central Java, have promoted several initiatives in view of the day for Social Communications, focusing on evangelization in the new media.
Moreover, the Archdiocese of Jakarta will hold a special mass and the screening of a film (called "Tunes for Asia"), in the context of the initiatives designed to strengthen the culture of life and cooperation between young people from different groups in the capital. Last week a crowd attended the seminar on new media and family, organized by Komsos KWI in Central Jakarta.
According to Fr. Pantus the massive seminar attendance by faithful indicates that today the use of online media has gained increasing attention among the people, especially the Catholics of Jakarta. Projects that have already been completed include www.mirifica.net , the official portal of the Indonesian Bishops' Conference.
Indonesia is the world's most populous Muslim nation. Christians represent 5.7 per cent of the population with Catholics just over 3.6 per cent.
The latter are an active part of society. Over the years, they have contributed to the nation's development and played a major role in emergency operations, as was the case during the devastating floods of January 2013.