Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference, General Decree on the Use of Electronic Media to Expound Catholic Doctrine, January 1998.


In accordance with the prescriptions of cc. 772, §2, and 831, §2, the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference hereby decrees that to expound Catholic teaching through the electronic media, the following provisions are to be observed:

3. Only those programmes which have been explicitly recognised by the competent ecclesiastical authority as concerning the transmission of Catholic doctrine shall be considered as Catholic.

4. Persons working in this field shall have had a good doctrinal preparation.

5. Such persons will also have been properly trained in the specialized language of the electronic media and will take into account:

– the diversity of audience and their various situations regarding the faith;

– the missionary and ecumenical dimensions of the proclamation of the Gospel in a pluralistic society;

– the status of the broadcasting company/companies.

6. For the usual participation in radio and television programmes which concern Catholic doctrine or morals, a cleric must have the authorisation of his proper Ordinary, a member of a religious institute, the permission of the proper superior; for national programmes, the

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authorization of the President of the Bishops’ Conference or his delegate is also required.

7. For the occasional participation in such programmes, whether local or national, a cleric must have the authorisation of his proper Ordinary, and member of a religious institute, the permission of the proper superior.




Code of Canon Law Annotated (Montréal: Wilson & Lafleur Limitée, 2004): 1777-1778.