Church challenges media to 'search for truth'

 The Catholic Church is bringing together representatives of the media and prominent church members engaged in public life to explore how they can work more closely together. At a three-day symposium: 'The Search for Truth' to be held in July, delegates will explore such sensitive issues as the ethics of journalism, potential conflicts of interests between journalism and one's Christian faith, and whether the media make people cynical about those in public life. Several high profile speakers will be addressing these issues from their personal and professional perspectives, including European Commissioner, the Rt Hon Chris Patten, BBC Director of Television, Mark Thompson, and Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Birmingham. A panel, comprised of journalists, politicians and church personnel, will attempt to find common ground as they each 'search for truth' in their respective professions or vocations. Symposium organiser, Ms Theresa Byrne said: "Coming hot on the heels of a General Election, this event will highlight many of the challenges facing Christians who work in the media and in public life. All of these areas of work have ideals towards which people are striving, but sometimes they may seem to conflict with each other. 'The Search for Truth' - among other things - should at least help the Church to understand where the media are coming from and why they do certain things in the way they do ... and vice versa!" 'The Search for Truth' takes place at St Mary's College, Strawberry Hill, Middlesex, from Friday 6 July to Sunday 8 July 2001. Participants will be drawn from all over England and Wales and from a wide range of professional and vocational backgrounds. For further information, contact Theresa Byrne on 020 7834 5442; e-mail: source: CMO

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