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Church and Communication
Course Level: Advanced
This is an ADVANCED level course and should not be attempted without sufficient grounding in the basics of the Catholic faith.
Media dominates modern culture. Everyone is immersed in communication technologies in ways that are expanding at a phenomenal pace. What does the Church have to say about this reality for our times? This course is designed for catechists, pastoral ministers, clergy and all those who seek a greater understanding of the Church's attitude, teaching and mission regarding entertainment and information media, including the theology and spirituality that underpins this teaching. Therefore the course relies heavily on Church documents to discuss issues such as what communication means and how it works, the history of communication within the Church, and pastoral planning for communication.
Successful completion of this course earns 2.5 CEU's. Click here for more information about CEU's.
General Course Objectives
- Understand the historical context of communication and communication media in the Church
- Identify and name key Church documents on communication and themes and how they relate to other significant ecclesial documents
- Explain the role of Vatican Council II in the Church’s understanding and approach to communication and media and what this means for today
- Implement and apply significant teachings to pastoral situations and planning
- No books required. All readings are online.
Course Structure and Highlights
- Week 1: Introduction to Communication Documents
- Name some key Church documents on communication and understand major themes of these documents
- Begin to understand what communication is and how it functions in society
- Relate these themes to one's own spiritual journey
- Week 2: The Media: Sources of information and entertainment and how they function in society
- Begin to see the historical context of communication and communication media in the Church
- Explain the responsibility of the media to promote the common good
- See communication as a process that can facilitate and unite all ministries
- Week 3: The History of Communication in the Church: Documents and Overview
- Better understand the historical context of communication and communication media in the Church
- Explain the role of Vatican Council II in the Church's understanding and approach to communication and media and what this means for today
- Verbalize the responsibility of the media to always speak the truth and understand that the media can play a role in helping all to become holy
- Week 4: The Theology and Spirituality of Communication
- See the Incarnation as God's self-communication to the world
- Understand that our response to Christ and our praise of God are rooted in communication
- Verbalize positive aspects of media and begin to see its potential for the proclamation of the Gospel message in the modern world
- Week 5: Pastoral Planning for Communication
- Appreciate the absolute necessity of making use of media in positive ways
- Apply significant teachings to pastoral situations and planning
- Refer to published guidelines for social communications planning