By editor - 16 November, 2014
The Head of the Vatican Press Office, Fr Federico Lombardi SJ, received an honorary doctorate (laurea honoris causa) from the Faculty of Social Communications at the Pontifical Salesian University in Rome on Friday.
The university presented Fr Lombardi with the award during the Solemn Academic Act that was part of its celebrations for the 25th anniversary of its foundation.
The celebrations included a conference titled, ‘Rethinking Communications: theories, techniques and teaching.’
In addition to being Director of the Holy See’s Press Office, Fr Lombardi is also the Director General of Vatican Radio.
Commenting on the occasion, the priest said, “Communication for the Church and for the people must accompany their life and their historical situation, must interpret their expectations and needs. If you really love the people you continue to walk with them.”
Speaking of his own 25 years of service to the Holy See in the field of communications, the Jesuit spoke about the Church’s “multi-lingual service for the different parts of the world” which has expanded to every continent, and allows the Church “to enter into dialogue with other cultures.”
“I know well that from Rome we cannot speak all the languages of the world, but I believe that the Church has a duty to show she knows how to speak languages from all continents and is interested in the inculturation of her message in the context of different situations and cultures.”
This, he suggested, should mean that different cultures can feel at home in Rome, and that Rome does not feel foreign to anyone.
“Cultural diversity is a necessary consequence of the universality of the Church, of her real attention to the peripheries,” he said.
The Salesian University in Rome said it wished to honour Fr Lombardi for his key role in the field of social communications of the Catholic Church over the past quarter of a century, saying he has always displayed great competence, dedication, equilibrium and love for the Church.