By Rachel Kogi, CSN Media
The Secretary General of the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria (CSN), Very Rev. Fr. Zacharia Nyantiso Samjumi on Friday, 28 January, 2022 unveiled the Communications Week (ComWEEK) logo on the occasion of the Media Parley with CSN community.In his welcome address at the event, Fr. Samjumi welcomed all the media professionals to the second edition of the Media Parley and thanked them for their continuous support to the Church’s mission. He noted that both the Church and the media are working towards the same goal – human progress, and challenged the journalists to respond responsibly to the negativities in the society and continue to collaborate with the CSN and the Church as a whole. “Let us try to make visible the people society has rendered invisible”, he said.The CSN leader went on to unveil the logo for the Communications Week programme debuting from 22 to 29 May, 2022, a programme which is an expansion of the World Communications Day, with special focus on media literacy.The National Director of Social Communications, Very Rev. Fr. Michael Nsikak Umoh, in his address, explained that the two main purposes the Media Parley serves are avenue for the Church to appreciate the invaluable support of media practitioners, as well as creates an opportunity to listen to them. Fr. Umoh observed that “the Catholic Church ceaselessly advocates for a society where the dignity of the human person is sacrosanct and the inalienable rights of everyone, especially the poor and most vulnerable in the society, are respected and defended.” He therefore challenged the journalists in their duty of reporting the Church: “As pressmen with the task of reporting the Church, these basics are critical to the proper framing of our narrative.”The image maker of the Catholic Church in Nigeria further noted that “the Catholic Bishops of Nigeria as a Conference, through their reflections, communiques and press releases, have consistently clamored for good governance as a panacea for lasting peace in Nigeria.” With the 2023 elections around the corner, he urged every good citizen to go out and obtain a voter’s card, while also calling on INEC to make the process easy for the people and make the votes count during election.Fr. Umoh introduced the theme of the 2022 Communications Day to the pressmen, “Listen with the ear of the heart” explaining that by this theme, “Pope Francis reminds the world that listening is basic and essential for genuine dialogue. It is an indispensable first step in human communication and a dimension of love.”Additionally, the National Director also informed the pressmen that the first plenary of the Catholic Bishops of Nigeria will hold from 5th to 11th of March, 2022, while the Catholic Church in Nigeria will also be hosting the RECOWA Conference from 2nd to 9th of May, 2022; both in Abuja.Other Directors, Priests and media professionals at the event presented their goodwill messages. The Executive Secretary of Catholic Caritas Foundation of Nigeria (CCFN), Very Rev. Fr. Uche Obodoechina expressed gratitude to the media bodies for their collaboration, reminding them of their responsibility to report ethically. He said, “media personnel should be circumspect because they hold a public trust.” In the same vein, the National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies (PMS), Very Rev. Fr. Solomon Zaku, affirmed that “the importance of the media to the Church can never be overemphasized.” He encouraged the media to continue preaching the good news through their profession. The CBCN Secretary on Education, Very Rev. Fr. Augustine Okochi also congratulated the National Director of Social Communications, CSN and commended his efforts at collaborating with the secular media.Also present at the event was the Chairman, Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Mr. Emmanuel Ogbeche. In his goodwill message, he thanked the CSN for the initiative and called on the Mother Church to stand with the pressmen at all times. The Chairman pledged the continuous support of the media to the Church in her efforts at social commission, social justice, good governance and all that will make society better. The National President of the Catholic Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria (CAMPAN), Mr. Patrick Osu, also pledged the loyalty and support of the association to always project the mind of the Church.