Shhhhh....The Word Is Out : Focus on Silence and Word : World Communications Day Theme Announced

The Vatican has announced Pope Benedict's choice of theme for the global church's next World Communications Day in 2012.

"Silence and Word: Path of Evangelization."

The Vatican acknowledged it initially might appear strange to ask professional wordsmiths to focus on silence, but it said silence is essential for really processing the words people hear or read.

The Catholic celebration of World Communications Day is marked in most dioceses on the Sunday before Pentecost, which in 2012 will be May 20th. 

A papal message for the occasion usually is released on the feast of St. Francis de Sales, patron of writers and journalists on January 24th

The Pontifical Council for Social Communications, which coordinates the event, released this statement this morning :English translation is below
"The extraordinarily varied nature of the contribution of modern communications to society highlights the need for a value which, on first consideration, might seem to stand in contra-distinction to it.
Silence is the central theme for the next World Communications Day Message: Silence and Word: path of evangelization.

In the thought of Pope Benedict XVI, silence is not presented simply as an antidote to the constant and unstoppable flow of information that characterizes society today but rather as a factor that is necessary for its integration.
Silence, precisely because it favors habits of discernment and reflection, can in fact be seen primarily as a means of welcoming the word.
We ought not to think in terms of a dualism, but of the complementary nature of two elements which when they are held in balance serve to enrich the value of communication and which make it a key factor that can serve the new evangelization."
 The Council said the Pope wanted to associate the theme of World Communications Day in May 2012 with preparations for the World Synod of Bishops, which will focus on "The New Evangelization For The Transmission of The Christian Faith" when it meets in October 2012.

 World Communications Day is the only worldwide celebration called for by the Second Vatican Council (Inter Mirifica, 1963).

First thoughts ???  I think it's a brilliant theme and I'm warming to it already.
I really do enjoy silence.
I wrote a post with some thoughts on it just a few days ago here  
Serendipity ?

Silence is God’s first language. – St. John of the Cross.
or In The beginning was the Word and the Word was God : St John.

If we are all going to be silent will there be a blogging hiatus on that day - or will there be a plethora of posts on silence enveloping us all in an avalanche of words after our silence.
--- nice paradox methinks.. who will break the silence first ??

Will there be a rush on silent retreats, books on silence and discernment, DVD re-runs of Into The Silence , already a bestseller...

- The monasteries better start preparing now.

Suggested Theme songs:

I think my favourite will have to be John Cage's 4 minutes 33 seconds : like the guy says we all experience silence in a different way.....whoever would have thought that you could have silence in three movements  and that there is even a John Cage's piece 4 minutes 33 seconds for piano !

and John Cage talks about his piece here...........

........ how about Bjork.  It's Oh So Quiet... 

No doubt lists of others with the theme of silence will follow.

I'm starting early and saying nothing ....only kidding.

The sweatshirts are already printed..

For starters what about God's silence ??? 
Andrew Petersen wrote this remarkable song below.


It’s enough to drive a man crazy; it’ll break a man’s faith
It’s enough to make him wonder if he’s ever been sane
When he’s bleating for comfort from Thy staff and Thy rod
And the heaven’s only answer is the silence of God

It’ll shake a man’s timbers when he loses his heart

When he has to remember what broke him apart
This yoke may be easy, but this burden is not
When the crying fields are frozen by the silence of God

And if a man has got to listen to the voices of the mob

Who are reeling in the throes of all the happiness they’ve got
When they tell you all their troubles have been nailed up to that cross
Then what about the times when even followers get lost?
‘Cause we all get lost sometimes…

There’s a statue of Jesus on a monastery knoll

In the hills of Kentucky, all quiet and cold
And He’s kneeling in the garden, as silent as a Stone
All His friends are sleeping and He’s weeping all alone

And the man of all sorrows, he never forgot

What sorrow is carried by the hearts that he bought
So when the questions dissolve into the silence of God
The aching may remain, but the breaking does not
The aching may remain, but the breaking does not
In the holy, lonesome echo of the silence of God

I believe in the sun even when it isn't shining. 
I believe in love even when I am alone. 
I believe in God even when he is silent." 

Some attribute this quote above to a message found scrawled on a cellar wall where Jews had hidden in World War II in Cologne, Germany. 

Then there's Michael Card's interpretation on The Silence of God......

  Download this mp3 from

Plenty here to reflect on for all of us for starters, in silence of course, but then afterwards I really do want to hear what you have to say !

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