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Encounter Grow Witness Podcast Episode 7: The Beauty of Truth

Beth and Fr. Steve examine Archbishop Vigneron’s June pastoral note The Beauty of Truth: A Pastoral Note on Communicating Truth and Love in the Digital Age and how we can implement these ideas in ministry.

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Show notes:

(0:50) Beth and Fr. Steve catch up and talk about the joys of Michigan summer. They share vacation updates, and then introduce this episode’s topic, Archbishop Vigneron’s pastoral note The Beauty of Truth.

(4:17) Fr. Steve introduces the first element of the pastoral note for discussion: the importance of not only what we say to people, but how we say it. Beth reflects on the “us vs. them” antagonism that exists in media, including among Catholics.

(6:40) The two reflect on the attitude and negativity people use on social media and refer to the Archbishop’s recognition that the internet is not a system of wires, but rather a connection of real people. Fr. Steve and Beth discuss the importance of learning how to disagree well and with civility.

(12:59) Beth addresses the interest young people have in ‘likes’ and calculating popularity through metrics, and she and Fr. Steve discuss how this problem can be solved. Beth suggests that more in-person relationships, general self-awareness, and increased prayer will combat this problem.

(17:44) Fr. Steve and Beth discuss the five “warning signs” Archbishop Vigneron identifies in the pastoral note, beginning with propositions that are out of harmony with the Church’s teachings. They encourage people to refer to the Catechism of the Catholic Church to confirm what the Church teaches and how we’re called to respond.

(20:39) They talk about unsubstantiated claims or allegations and how pervasive of a problem this is today. Fr. Steve discusses our obligation as Catholics to the words we use and, rooted in the eighth commandment, to not bear false witness.

(23:38) Beth introduces the third warning sign, which is the manipulation of facts to deceive or cause harm. Fr. Steve mentions our call as Catholics to presume goodwill in others while still thinking critically. The two also talk about our obligation for the content we consume.

(28:59) Moving to the fourth and fifth warning signs, Fr. Steve and Beth discuss ad hominem attacks and the spirit of division, and the need for us to be apostles in this day and age.

(34:57) For the end-of-show quiz, Beth tests Fr. Steve on the most popular dog breeds, and Fr. Steve successfully guesses seven!

Links from this episode:

The Beauty of Truth