FABC Related Publications
Catholic Communications India
Findings of a Nation-wide Survey 2005
Edited by Henry D'Souza and Valerian Rodrigues
The Commission for Social Communications of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of India (CBCI) in New Delhi has published an extensive survey on Catholic communications in India. The project was commissioned by the All-India Bishops' conference during their General Assembly in January 2004 on the theme "Communication." It reflects the opinion of Catholics, bishops, priests, religious and lay about the activities and programs of regional and diocesan communication centers in the country.
The survey is a mixture between opinion poll and actual views given from the perspective of Church-related people. Because it is a survey about Catholics and their views, some information might be one-sided. The survey says, for example, that Radio Veritas Asia (RVA) has only one percent listenership and a little bit less than Vatican Radio. This does not take into account that RVA, the facility broadcasting from Manila (Philippines), has 90 percent non-Christian listeners. Further, RVA has only programs in Bengali, Telugu, Tamil, Hindi and Urdu languages. Because of this, the FABC sponsored station cannot really be compared to Vatican Radio which also broadcasts in English mainly to a Christian-Catholic clientele.
It might be interesting also to look into the overall priorities for the social communication apostolate of the Church from a scale of 20, the first five priorities of which are: (1) effective public relations (2) sharing information within community (3) training Church leaders in communication (4) making timely press statements (5) training in pastoral communications. The last three of the "priorities" given are video, VCD, DVD productions, audiocasette, CD production and training in journalism.
The survey is based on questionnaires sent to the different regional and diocesan communication centers as well as to a random selection of individuals. Like all surveys of this kind, they can only indicate directions of working and thinking but have to be consolidated in many more detailed and locally adjusted ways.
The CBCI communication commission has to be congratulated for their work-intensive initiative which can be also an example for the planning of other bishops' conferences within the FABC.
The 384-page book with detailed reports and statistics is available at the CBCI Commission for Social Communication, Delhi, India with email: firstname.lastname@example.org
At the Side of the Multitudes
The Kingdom of God and the Mission of the Church in the FABC Documents
by Miguel Marcelo Quatra, omi
This is the English version of a doctoral dissertation originally written in Italian submitted to the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome under the guidance of the late Fr. Jacques Dupuis, sj. The author who has been working in Indonesia calls the FABC in his introduction, "a basin wherein different waters merge together, interact, compromise and in a process of cross-fertilization, give birth to a vibrant and stimulating vision"(p. 2)
The English edition "presents a simpler version" of the original Italian text. "Some details and even some chapters have been omitted so as to make the exposition more fluent, maintaining however, its scientific character."
The book presents in six chapters after a general description
of the FABC the universal and the Christological, Ecclesiological,
Historical and Eschatological Dimension of the reign of God according
Publisher: Claretian Publications, Manila, 2000.
The Churches in Asia
by Georg Evers
“The Churches in Asia” is the title
of a new book related to FABC. It is the English edition of a German
book published by the former director (1979-2001) of the Missiological
Institute of Missio Aachen, Dr Georg Evers. Over the years, he has
been at many FABC conferences especially cooperating with the FABC
Office of Theological Concerns. Evers’ book presents reports
on all member countries of the FABC and refers, after a short historical
overview especially to developments in the last 50 years. The new
publication is of great help for a first orientation and deeper
understanding of Church-related developments in different Asian
The book is organized according to different parts
of Asia starting with East Asia, followed by Southeast Asia, the
Indian sub-continent and a short overview of the new countries of
Central Asia. The English version is updated from the earlier German
original. The book is a good source for courses in missiology, Church
history and pastoral ministry. It should be in any theological and
especially in every seminary library. The Asian publisher is “Indian
Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge (ISPCK)” based in
New Delhi. The book is priced at 350 Rupees in India.
Some data in the publication still need some updating
or correction; thus, for example, the different FABC offices (p.
xxiii) were not created because of “Bishops’ Institutes”
but exactly the other way around: Those institutes like “Bishops’
Institute for Social Communication” (BISCOM) were created
and organized by already existing offices.
East Timor is already an associate member of the
FABC. Only with a third diocese, could a bishops’ conference
be created and only then can the country become a full member of
As for “Radio Veritas Asia,” which
should read not only “Radio Veritas” (p. 352), the station
never had television facilities (p. 194). The separation between
home service (Philippines only) and overseas service (Radio Veritas
Asia) happened in 1990 although the name “Radio Veritas Asia”
was already used much earlier for the overseas service of the station.
In the different country sections, still some more
updates can be made. But the mere fact that such a comprehensive
book is now available is note-worthy and appreciated.
Publisher: India Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge (ISPCK), Delhi,
PENTECOST IN ASIA
A NEW WAY OF BEING CHURCH
by Thomas C. Fox
Thomas C. Fox is a journalist related to the
"US National Catholic Reporter" and married to a lady from Vietnam.
His experiences at the Asian Synod of Bishops in 1998 in Rome and
the FABC Plenary Assembly 2000 in Samphran, Thailand are the origin
of this book which gives a good journalistic report on the workings
of the Spirit in Asia. He reports on different FABC experiences
and reflections beginning with the "New Way of Being Church" as
an expression coined by the FABC General Assembly in Bandung, Indonesia
in 1990. Unfortunately his reports are only based on a few FABC
offices and misses out completely the activities of "Radio Veritas
Asia" as the continental Catholic Radio station for Asia which since
1970/1974 is the responsibility of FABC. The book is an inspiring
journalistic report for everybody interested in Christianity in
Publisher: Orbis Books, Maryknoll, 2002
Claretian Publications, Manila, 2003.