Last week, the Italian bishops hosted a conference on new media, called Digital Witnesses: Faces and Languages in the Cross-Media Age. It was a national event, but some international speakers were also there. One of those was my friend Fr. Roderick Vonhögen; with his SQPN media network he is at the forefront of Catholic new media, and that has been noticed in Italy too. To the left he is pictured Pope Benedict XVI at the end of the conference. You can hear Fr. Roderick’s own account of that unexpected meeting in the latest episode of The Break.
The pope didn’t just show up to shake hands with podcasting priests. He also had one or two things to say. Thanks to Zenit his address is now available in English. Keep an eye on this post for the Dutch version, coming soon.
The website of the friends of the Jeroen Bosch hospital in ‘s Hertogenbosch has a poll. They are asking the public to vote for one of ten projects, some of which they are looking to realise. Ultimately, they say, this will result in a top 5 of projects they will try to find funding for. The last project in the list is the creation of a chapel. It’s in second place now, with 3050 votes. In first place is the furnishing of a Muslim prayer centre. That has 3148 votes.
Hospitals are fine and necessary institutions, but people, especially in sickness and pain, are more than just their body. A chapel, a place to find silence and so God, is more than a luxury. It is a necessity.