Last week we learned why an Integrated Pastoral Communications Plan (IPCP) is a crucial model for the Church to adopt in a move away from an isolationist model to a collaborative one. Vicar for Communications, Fr Robert Christo shares its potential effect on our local and Caribbean Church.
What is the purpose of IPCP in our Caribbean region?
To respond to the ever-growing challenge of evangelising and catechising the next generation by communicating faith (and its stories) while utilising the new evolving communication technology. It should bring people together for radical transformation, healing and application of the diverse social communications which look deeply at issues like: domestic abuse, corruption, violence, pornography, crime, etc…
The Bishops of the Antilles Episcopal Conference (AEC) have also endorsed a Communications e-seminar on the AEC pastoral letter New Ways of Being Church in a Digital Milieu written by the Bishops. By participating in the e-seminar, persons were encouraged to understand the valid contribution e-faith formation can offer people of the diocese. It also worked to demonstrate a “proactive, prophetic and collaborative stance” to make a difference throughout the Caribbean.
What is our archdiocese’s position throughout this process?
The local Church is understanding the dire need to reach out and connect with people where they are and where they spend most of their time: in the virtual world. This must also go the other way where digital citizens will reach out and connect with the Church. The opening up of the diversity of communication technologies and an IPCP will afford us the rich opportunity to begin to rethink, plan and act collaboratively for the future and to reach the evolving generations. It will allow us to embrace a model more consistent with communion and community.
Has Archbishop Jason Gordon endorsed this initiative?
Most certainly! The integration of any change or model into a diocese requires top leadership support. Archbishop Jason Gordon has been a pioneer on the pastoral letter and all AEC bishops have endorsed IPCPs in their respective diocese.
In our archdiocese, Archbishop Gordon is very committed to this vision and our Church’s communication mission. At a meeting with us he said, “Working in collaboration is a lot more difficult but working in collaboration is a lot more effective if you want to really get a complex, gamut task done…and so the challenges that face us as Church cannot be addressed by any single organisation, department or ministry.”
This week, reflect on these four principles which can help foster collaboration within our diocese, parish or faith community:
Effective collaboration based on solidarity, stewardship and synergy
Avoidance of duplication
Provision of opportunities and structures for collaboration.
Cover of the AEC pastoral letter New Ways of Being Church in a Digital Milieu