Ahead of Communications Day, Kenyan Nun Urges Journalists “to preserve Christian values”

Sr. Beatricre Njau, FSP, Responsible for Paulines Audiovisuals Africa. Credit: Sr. Beatrice Njau, FSP/Nairobi

Catholic journalists are to foster Christian values in their practice of professional journalism to facilitate evangelization through modern means of communication, a Nairobi-based Catholic Nun has said. 

In an interview with ACI Africa on the sidelines of the meeting of representatives from Catholic media houses in Nairobi Archdiocese preparing for the 56th World Communications Day (WCD) in the Kenyan Metropolitan See, Sr. Beatrice Njau urged Catholic journalists to adhere to the gospel of truth, reporting “in an exemplary way”.

“A Catholic Journalist can work anywhere but just make sure you bring a different touch to your work. We should be able to preserve human dignity, always be able to preserve the Christian values, the gospel values that we value as a way of evangelizing,” Sr. Njau told ACI Africa during the Wednesday, May 18 interview.

The member of the Daughters of St. Paul (FSP) said that Catholic journalists need to “fine-tune” themselves as they consume and generate news stories.

“As Catholic journalists, we should report in an exemplary way, that we become role models. We have to fine-tune ourselves so that we are not only big consumers of news, but also generators of news,” Sr. Njau said.


She added that Catholic Journalists need to embrace feature stories and not just hard news. Feature stories, she explained, are important in providing an in-depth understanding of issues.

Catholic Journalists engage the media to evangelize not just the public but the practice itself, Sr. Njau said, adding that with the Internet, so much has been simplified for the good of the church.

In the May 18 interview, the Nairobi-based Catholic Nun said that since Pope Paul VI established the WCD in 1967, so much progress has been witnessed in the church. She said that several media houses have sprung up in the church as a result of WCD.

Sr. Beatrice Njau, FSP, responsible for Paulines Audiovisuals Africa. Credit: Sr. Beatrice Njau, FSP/Nairobi

“Since WCD was instituted, the church has made a lot of progress in the way it chooses instruments of communication, the mass media and of course, many things have happened; now in all our Dioceses, we have communication departments,” the FSP member at the helm of Paulines Audiovisuals Africa said.

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She added, “We are supposed to evangelize the world in its present situation.”

“Even at national level, at the Episcopal Conference, at the continental level, up to the international level and the Vatican… the Department of Communication is now indispensable,” Sr. Njau said.

The existence of media houses within the church, she went on to say, is a gesture that the work of evangelization has to continue. She said that Catholic media entities are just like other works done in the church including building of hospitals and schools.

Sr. Njau who presents the "Bible journey program" on Radio Maria Nairobi said that the church is very attentive and that there is still more to be done.

The Kenyan-born Sister added that the modern world, which she said is digital in nature, has “rendered society angry”. She said that people are angry and their anger is manifested in what they write and read on social media.


She made reference to Pope Francis’ Message for 2022 WCD  titled, “Listening with the ear of the heart” and said that the Holy Father is seeking to establish a journey in the church. Pope Francis, she said, spoke about “seeing” in the previous year before coming up with the “listening” aspect of the Church this year.

“What the Holy Father is doing is helping us to make a journey, because we live in a world where we have been overtaken a little bit by the instruments of communication and they can make us lose our human dignity,” Sr. Njau told ACI Africa. 

She added during the May 18 interview, “As human persons we have a certain dignity, and this dignity means that we are able to recognize the good in ourselves and the good in other people.”

“God himself has made us his children; God has given us his spirit; so, if you're listening with the ear of the heart, the heart is where God is. So, it means actually you are listening with the heart of God, meaning you are compassionate, you are merciful,” Sr. Njau said in reference to the Holy Father’s Message for 2022 WCD.

She continued, “We have to listen with the ear of the heart as the Holy Father is telling us that this heart also is the seat of discernment, the seat of making proper decisions; we just don't listen without paying attention.”

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In the May 18 interview with ACI Africa, Sr. Njau reflected on the relationship between the ongoing preparations for the Synod on Synodality and the WCD, and said that the themes of the two seek to take the church to the same journey and in a similar direction.

“The theme of the Synod is the mission of the church. We also have a theme for World Communications Day and the two marry very well; they are guiding us to the same end,” the Nairobi-based FSP member said, and added, “We have to walk together as God's children, as a family of God.”

She explained, “The Holy Father is telling us that we live in a world where everybody has an opinion but let's have a correct opinion so that we can participate, we can be in communion and we can go into mission together, the same thing about the theme of communication which is listening.”

She posed, “Where can you find communion if it's not in the seat of the heart?”

In a separate interview with ACI Africa, the Coordinator of the members of Catholic media houses in the Archdiocese of Nairobi said that it is only through listening to each other that people can journey together.

“I think that the ongoing Synod and the world communication day and the theme that was chosen, listening with the ear of the heart, there is a very strong connection; one influences the other or affects the other in a positive way,” Fr. Andrew Bwalya told ACI Africa during the May 18 interview.

The idea of the Synod on synodality, which entails getting views from different people, depends on the attitude of listening, the member of the Comboni Missionaries who oversees the New People Media Center said.

Silas Mwale Isenjia is a Kenyan journalist with a great zeal and interest for Catholic Church related communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communication from Moi University in Kenya. Silas has vast experience in the Media production industry. He currently works as a Journalist for ACI Africa.