I had the great joy of attending Mass this morning for the media celebrated by the cardinal vicar of Rome on the feast day of our patron saint, St. Francis de Sales. From what I could see and hear, it was predominantly Italian Catholic media. One of my friends in the vicariate is Msgr. Walter Insero, head of diocesan communications. I shared a fun story with him about a man we both knew, the late Cardinal John Foley.
Cardinal John Foley was one of the best Catholic communicators ever, as well as a friend. I remember one speech he gave about Francis de Sales in which he said he and the saint had 3 things in common – both were bishops, both writers and both bald! Humor was always a hallmark of his!
I was going to ask Msgr. Walter to send me the cardinal’s homily but L’Osservatore Romano published a summary of his words directed specifically to the media which I have used here.
CARDINAL VICAR OF ROME CELEBRATES MASS FOR THE MEDIA ON PATRONAL FEAST
Addressing members of the media at a Mass this morning, feast of St. Francis de Sales, patron of writers and journalists, Cardinal Angelo De Donatis, vicar for the diocese of Rome, said, “Dear journalists and communicators, I encourage you to live your profession as a vocation at the service of truth, without tiring.” He spoke at Mass in the Basilica of Santa Maria in Montesanto, also known as Santa Maria degli Artisti (St. Mary of Artists), in Rome’s Piazza del Popolo. This year marks the 4th centenary of the death of St. Francis.
The cardinal thanked the media “for the commitment, courage and generosity shown in the harshest periods of the pandemic, guaranteeing information service.” He exhorted them with the words of Pope Francis in his 2021 Message for the 55th Day of Social Communications, to cultivate “a curiosity, an openness and a passion” that leads to “wearing out the soles of shoes.”
Pope Francis’ Message for the Day of Social Communications is always released on the January 24 feast of St. Francis. His 2022 Message, released today, can be found here: Pope’s Communications Day message: ‘Listening is essential for dialogue’ – Vatican News
The cardinal vicar then invited journalists to take part in the synodal journey as members of the Church of Rome, supporting it “by intercepting the voices, stories and experiences of people we might risk not reaching. In this sense, parish collaboration in helping to read the reality of the various districts of the capital is precious. In moments of fatigue and discouragement due to the difficulties and complexity of the work, may this truth be consoled by the patron saint Francis de Sales: ‘It is not the greatness of our actions that will please God, but the ‘love with which we accomplish them’.”
Piazza del Popolo –