The Good Kind of Silence of the Lambs

In the Roman Catholic World, today is World Communications Day today, the day set aside by the Bishops at the Second Vatican Council for Catholics to reflect on the role of communications in the world. That was a novel idea in the 1960’s when they started it. But we probably spend some part of every day thinking about the way in communicating, if only to wonder why our cell phone isn’t connecting right.

Each year, the Pope releases a brief address that highlights a particular area of concern, such as the portrayal of women, the rise in pornography, or the role of the media in respect, truth, and communion. This morning, the Catholic Moral Theology blog published a piece I wrote on this year’s address, which focuses on silence. Silence, Pope Benedict suggests, is a necessary precondition for the success of the many necessary communication events we engage in.

It is an interesting suggestion, and worth reflecting on. But it’s something that in our talkative world is a bit like coffee: off-putting and bitter the first time you try it, but a revelation once you get past the first few sips.

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