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Cardinal Tagle outlines pastoral challenges of communication

Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila spoke of missionary work, outlining the pastoral challenges of communication, and evangelization in the digital world during the inauguration of the Veritas Institute of Social Communication in Manila on Dec. 10.

"Every Christian is called to communicate, through his life, the presence and compassion of Christ, said the newly appointed Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

In an interview with the Vatican’s "L'Osservatore Romano," Cardinal Tagle spoke of his new position, saying "if this is the will of God - and I am convinced it is - I am happy to begin this new service."

"The Holy Father sent me a message, giving me a new responsibility. I am grateful to him for the trust he has placed in me," he added.

The cardinal recalled the "many e-mails and messages" he received "from all over the world" after the news of his appointment came out.

From Africa, from the Middle East, from Asian countries such as Japan and Cambodia and from many other nations, he said, adding that "this also shows me that there is enthusiasm among the faithful for the work of evangelization."

He noted that despite the need to have qualified personnel for the various areas of formation and social communication, the proclamation of the Gospel begins with a "spirituality of listening."

He said everyone is called to "listen to God and listen to one another with patience, interest and attention" and to play a role in evangelization.

"Very often when we talk about communication, we are in a hurry and we do not listen to other people. We do not pay much attention to listening to others with the heart," he said, adding that listening is "a necessary first step in evangelization."

He also stressed the need to involve more and more young people and women in the ministry. "Young people know the digital world better than we do," he said.

"Women also have a natural predisposition for interpersonal communication," he added.

"When I call my parents and talk to them, my father says very few sentences, and then passes the phone to my mother, saying 'talk to your mother,'" said the cardinal. "Women and mothers are experts in communication."

"We are living in the age of artificial intelligence," he said, noting that nowadays the Internet is everywhere and that people are connected 24 hours a day.

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