COMMUNICATION FOR COMMUNION
The Pope, last March 27 in the extraordinary prayer from St. Peter's Square, pointed out to us what we left behind: “The storm exposes our vulnerability” he told us, making us see that we have lost the security of our agendas, projects and routines. “The façade of those stereotypes with which we camouflaged our egos has fallen away" as our western pride of feeling omnipotent masters of science and progress has fallen.
“We are not self-sufficient; by ourselves we founder” because we said “goodbye” to the fickleness of being the owners of the modern world. Every day we are faced with not being able to self-decide when and where to go, how to meet, work or study, "we are suffering from a lack of tenderness and chances to meet up” and most dramatically, we have lost many lives. In front of these and so many other losses and uncertainties, what remains?
Lately I have participated in several virtual conferences, organized by various institutions, in which they have asked me for reflections and testimonies about women in times of the pandemic. I always think of you, the women of WUCWO members of our organisations spread throughout the world. I pray for you and I reflect on ourselves: what does the Lord make available to us, apart from the faith that by his grace we profess? Rather, what is the Good God serving us today to feed us at the banquet of life on the planet? What remains and the Lord Himself offers us on a plate is communication. One example is enough: the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life launched the campaign The elderly are your grandparents, “call them by phone or video, listen to them!", "#sendyourhug" and asks us to spread the initiative on social networks.
And we, have we not increased the use of mobile phones, WhatsApp, emails and/or digital platforms for meetings? How many hours a day do we spend with the mobile phone in hand or in front of our screens? We, people and organisations, have reduced ourselves to what we have been able to communicate. Digital technologies have allowed us new ways to enter into relationship. Along with the thirst to be communicated - not just digitally - the communication capacity that our Creator gave us was put in evidence. We were created for the relationship with each another, with God and also with the planet. For us, this relationship can have no other style than that of Jesus, the Good Samaritan, who sensitises with the wounded man on the roadside, he approaches him and heals him so that he can restore and integrate into society. Communication is for communion, to unite us fraternally, to make us grow reciprocally.
I invite you to embark on a path of communication for communion between WUCWO member organisations. We need mutual knowledge, a discovery (or re-discovery) of the potentialities and limitations of each, of their projects and priorities, of their inclusion in the local Church, according to the characteristics of their country and their culture. Our diversity will enrich us and allow us to strengthen bonds of mutual collaboration. It is by listening to and appreciating each other that we can build the culture of encounter that Pope Francis so highly recommends. “Such a capacity for understanding and communication (…) is based on the communion of love among the divine Persons (…) Faith itself, in fact, is a relationship, an encounter; and under the impetus of God’s love, we can communicate, welcome and understand the gift of the other and respond to it.” (Message World Communications Day 2019)
I call on you to strengthen ties between our member organisations. Let us accept the challenge of generating communication for communion, in the midst of the pandemic. For this we have several open paths.
Let's participate in the webinars for our training - which we have already started in each language - as they will allow us to get to know each organisation better and perhaps their good practices will inspire the development of our own activities.
Let's participate with our communication representatives in the institutional communication sessions. We have started with the online workshops in Spanish and we will soon launch those in English and French.
Let's participate with our younger members in The elderly are your grandparents campaign, so that all elder women of WUCWO organisations feel accompanied and listened to in the midst of the emergency.
For personal reflection and prayer, I propose to you the 2019 Message World Communications Day. And let us pray together so that the disease and fragility that surround us do not lead us away from the commitment of communicating for communion.
María Lía Zervino, Servidora
WUCWO President General