Project partners of Aid to the Church in Need from various countries have been asking for help from the pontifical foundation to support radio stations and improve their audiovisual equipment to transmit the Mass, offer spiritual and human formation
Along with the support of priests, men and women religious to be able to continue with their pastoral and assistance mission in the countries most in need of the new pandemic of Covid-19, the Pontifical Foundation Aid to the Church in Need is receiving requests for urgent support to strengthen the Catholic media , with which many dioceses and religious congregations around the world send the broadcasts of the Mass , the teaching of the catechism and offer accompaniment to thousands of people confined to their homes due to the Corona virus pandemic.
Many parishes, dioceses, congregations and movements have had to adapt to new technologies in many countries. In places with few resources, they face an impossible task without outside help.
“We are currently playing the role of messengers of hope for a society that is afraid of the pandemic. We must help keep the flame of faith alive from the hope that, if everyone collaborates, the world will be able to return to normality, “says Alessandra Bonfanti , deputy director of the Catholic radio station Radio Sol Mansi in Guinea-Bissau .
Ditunga team of radio professionals in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. (ACN)
This radio is a reference not only for Catholics but for the rest of society. In the last national elections, Radio Sol Mansi was one of the most consulted media, as people value their independence from other media splashed by the corruption that prevails in the country.
“We want to be the radio for peace in Guinea Bissau,” says Bonfanti, who tells ACN how this means of communication is also the presence of the Church in many places of first evangelization, broadcasting Holy Masses live, programs on social doctrine of the Church in accessible language , as well as local and international information programs, “the Catholic media allow thousands of people not to be left without the support of their faith.”
In Mozambique, due to the lack of a local Catholic radio, the Quilemane diocese, a small port on the north coast of the Country , has requested support from ACN to build a Radio Maria substation . This area of the country suffered a lot during the long Mozambican civil war, and in recent years they have suffered violent attacks by Muslim fundamentalist groups. ACN wants to support part of this evangelization project for which it is necessary to build a new studio and the technical means for broadcasting.
Paolo Taffuri, coordinator for Africa of the World Family of Radio Maria , has expressed to ACN the fundamental role of Radio Maria, and more in this new context of the Covid-19 pandemic: “ Radio is the most used means of communication in Africa . The coronavirus situation has been affecting us for weeks here too. Due to the suspension of liturgical activities, the bishops are inviting the faithful to follow the Mass on radio, television and social networks . ”
ACN’s Covid-19 crisis emergency campaign reaches out to many countries in support of Catholic media. There are several examples, such as the development of biblical formation programs for isolated communities in Argentina requested by the Nuestra Señora de Luján Communication Center, Radio Veritas – a network of Catholic radio stations that reaches different countries in Asia from the Philippines, and the support of Radio Maria in the diocese of Bratislava, Slovakia or Minsk, Belarus , in eastern Europe.