Bishop Ignatie believes sharing fake news on coronavirus creates panic and exploits people’s fears

His Grace Bishop Ignatie thinks that fake news is a ‘true plague’ in times of crisis because by sharing false information, people’s fears are exploited.

Fake news ‘do nothing but create panic. (…) We become even more panicked, more stressed and anxious about what is being conveyed.’

The Bishop of Husi warned that ‘if we are not intelligent enough and do not have an excellent spirit of discernment,’ some of the fake news ‘will anaesthetize us,’ and we will end up swallowing them as painkillers.

In his homily at the diocesan cathedral in Husi, Bishop Ignatie referred to the teachings of St John Climacus on truncating or concealing the truth, which is an obstacle in the path of spiritual perfection.

‘Saint John Climacus tells us that deceit and cunning are at the origin of every lie. In other words, those who launch or make propaganda, fake news, are hypocrites and very cunning,’ the Bishop of Husi cautioned March 29.

“Those who make these propagandistic lies, which are far more serious than the fake news, do nothing but transmit that they are controlled by fear.”

The bishop also stressed the link between lie and fear. “Man is only lying because of fear,” said His Grace, because “he is afraid not to bear certain consequences of the truth he would tell.”

The hierarch said that behind all propagandistic lies stands a wicked, cunning spirit, which treacherously packs the untruth with an attractive image.

‘It is the lie that diminishes the love between people. We no longer have the capacity to love one another. Christ Himself tells us that “the father of lies is the devil.” The devil does not mean love. It means hatred, division, very much division.’

“Where there are lies, fake news, there is division and hate. Behind these lies stands an evil spirit that inspires those who launch them.”

The Bishop of Husi concluded his speech urging discernment and attention.

Photography courtesy of the Husi Diocese

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