The Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord on Sunday 24 May this year is also the 54th World Day of Social Communications. will be celebrated. Pope Francis this year has chosen the theme storytelling and he makes a direct reference to the book of Exodus in the Old Testament in the introduction to the message on the theme, “That you may tell your children and grandchildren” (Ex 10:2) Life becomes history.
the Holy Father says, “I would like to devote this year’s Message to the theme of storytelling, because I believe that, so as not to lose our bearings, we need to make our own the truth contained in good stories. Stories that build up, not tear down; stories that help us rediscover our roots and the strength needed to move forward together. Amid the cacophony of voices and messages that surround us, we need a human story that can speak of ourselves and of the beauty all around us. A narrative that can regard our world and its happenings with a tender gaze. A narrative that can tell us that we are part of a living and interconnected tapestry. A narrative that can reveal the interweaving of the threads which connect us to one another.”
Sharing his message for the 54th World Communications Day, pope warns all of us that not all stories are good stories and stories are used by people to exploit others. He asks, “How many stories serve to lull us, convincing us that to be happy we continually need to gain, possess and consume.” Then he goes on to explain what the false stories can in fact do to us. He writes, “By patching together bits of unverified information, repeating banal and deceptively persuasive arguments, sending strident and hateful messages, we do not help to weave human history, but instead strip others of their dignity.”
After having warned everyone that ‘we need courage to reject false and evil stories’ Pope encourages us to be influenced by the stories in the sacred scriptures as well of the lives of saints. “As we read the Scriptures, the stories of the saints, and also those texts that have shed light on the human heart and its beauty, the Holy Spirit is free to write in our hearts, reviving our memory of what we are in God’s eyes. When we remember the love that created and saved us, when we make love a part of our daily stories, when we weave the tapestry of our days with mercy, we are turning another page.”
Pope ends his message asking us to seek message from our Lady who knew how to untie the knots of life with the gentle strength of love:
O Mary, woman and mother, you wove the divine Word in your womb, you recounted by your life the magnificent works of God. Listen to our stories, hold them in your heart and make your own the stories that no one wants to hear. Teach us to recognize the good thread that runs through history. Look at the tangled knots in our life that paralyze our memory. By your gentle hands, every knot can be untied. Woman of the Spirit, mother of trust, inspire us too. Help us build stories of peace, stories that point to the future. And show us the way to live them together.