The proficiency of the practice of Journalism is more profound in times of challenges; as practitioners who take the risk report the truth, while those who go into hiding or are afraid of taking the risk report hearsay and falsehood; the Episcopal Chairman of the Social Communications Directorate of the Catholic bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN), Most Rev. Denis Isizoh has declared.
The Bishop Chairman made this remark while addressing the opening ceremony of the first 2020 Plenary Meeting of the Diocesan/Religious Directors of Communications Association, held recently at the Bishop James Moynagh Pastoral Centre, Uyo, Akwa-Ibom State. The meeting with the theme: That You May Tell Your Children and Grandchildren (Exodus 10:2) Life Creates Story; was attended by about 25 members of the association from all the nine Ecclesiastical Provinces in the country; in spite of the global Corona Virus pandemic which made some of the directors to stay away from the meeting.
While commending the directors who braved all dangers and ill-advice against attending the meeting, Bishop Isizoh described them as the heroes of the Church Communications apostolate in Nigeria; noting that their professional commitment and dedication to the work of the Church made them to take the risk to attend the meeting. His words: “We received many negative and exaggerated messages, especially from those who were afraid to come; but here we are in Uyo, safe, hale and hearty and so shall we return to our various dioceses at the end of our deliberations.”
Bishop Isizoh who is the Auxiliary Bishop of Onitsha Archdiocese noted that news coverage in Nigeria is worrisome due to lack of proper coverage and authentication of facts. He declared: “In the present situation, some of our journalists hide away and do not go to their work; and from their hiding place publish hearsay, rumour and falsehood. He emphasized that journalists should inform and form the people”.
The Bishop Chairman admonished that communication directors should, in these challenging times, be courageous enough to be like their overseas professional colleagues who take the risks to be on the field to report the truth and inform the people accurately. He noted that reaching out with the Good News of Christ, through the communications apostolate is not an armchair work.
Bishop Isizoh while wishing the directors successful deliberations urged them to come out with far reaching decisions that will help the Church to contribute proactively in the fight against the Corona Virus pandemic that is ravaging the world; with particular focus on the Nigerian situation.
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