Category Archives: SIGNIS

SIGNIS Asia Focus features Assam Don Bosco University Media Dept

Signis Asia FocusGuwahati — The Signis Asia Focus, a quarterly e-publication of the world Catholic Communications Asia group has run a two page feature on Assam Don Bosco University’s Mass Communication department. The news feature in its May issue is found on pages 9 and 10 of the attached PDF file. Signis Asia Focus-May 2016

SIGNIS Asia Focus is its official quarterly publication. The 20 member countries of Signis Asia are divided into three regions: South Asia (5), East Asia (5) and South East Asia (10) members. South Asia members are:  Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. East Asia members are: Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Maccau and Taiwan. South East Asia members include Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, and Timor Leste.

Signis is the World Catholic Association for Communication. http://www.signis.netSignis was created in November 2001 from the merger between two organizations (Unda, for radio and television; and OCIC, for cinema and audiovisuals) that were both created in 1928. Signis has consultative status with UNESCO, Ecosoc (United Nations in Geneva and New York), and the Council of Europe.

It is officially recognized by the Vatican as a Catholic organization for communication. The secretariat of Signis World is in Brussels, Belgium.

SIGNIS Objectives: Signis’ primary objective is to oversee and coordinate communications activites in the field of cinema, radio, television, audiovisuals, research and training.

Signis also involves itself in film festivals (Cannes, Berlin, Monte Carlo, Venice, Ouagadougou, etc…) and makes the Church’s presence by being a member of the jury in most major film festivals of the world.

Members of Signis World come from all over the world representing 140 nations. Apart from nations, membership is also open to organizations and institutions who have similar objectives.


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Media priest Fr. Reuter dies at 96

Fr. James B. Reuter, S.J.

Fr. James B. Reuter, S.J.

KOLKATA, (C.M. Paul) – The grand old man of Signis Asia formerly Unda/OCIC Asia, Fr. James B. Reuter, S.J., of the Philippines described as “legendary,” media priest died on Monday, December 31, after succumbing to a lingering illness. He was 96 years old.

Reuter will be laid to rest on Saturday, 5th January 2013 at the Jesuit cemetery at the Sacred heart Novitiate in Novaliches, Quezon City. The funeral mass will be held at the Gesu at 8:30 a.m.

In a statement from Malacañang presidential palace, the Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda cited Fr Reuter who first arrived in the Philippines as a young Jesuit novice before World War II and throughout his priestly vocation in the country, became “friend, mentor, confessor, adviser to generations of Filipinos.”

“From the time he first came to this country before World War II as a young Jesuit novice, to his passing after a lingering illness today, Fr. James B. Reuter found happiness and fulfillment in his priestly vocation in the Philippines. His impact was most deeply felt in the sphere of communications, whether in the promotion of the Family Rosary Crusade, or the formation of JESCOM in the Philippines. Along the way he was friend, mentor, confessor, adviser to generations of Filipinos, both in public and private life, and in the media, arts, and journalism,” Lacierda said.

“His love of the Philippines and Filipinos was legendary; so much so it earned him a stature and affection beyond the measure of the many awards, both national and sectoral, that he received throughout his long life. We join the Society of Jesus in the Philippines, the generations of alumni of the Ateneo de Manila University, and men and women of media, arts, and letters, who mourn the loss of this man of faith, good cheer, and eloquence,” he added.

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Asian Catholic Media professionals focus on modern day slavery

Signis Asia Assembly 2012 core group meeting

KOLKATA, (C.M. Paul) – Asian Catholic media professionals meeting in Petaling Jaya (Malaysia) 1- 5 October will study the plight of migrant workers, refugees, victims of human trafficking and children in the Asian context.

The study theme is: Engaging the Creativity of the New Generation, with the sub-theme “Visibility for the Vulnerable.”

Some 70 delegates are expected to participate from 19 member countries of SIGNIS Asia including reps from SIGNIS World office in Brussels. The 11-member Indian delegation (representing 13 regions) also includes a member of the Daughters of St Paul from northeast India.

“These modern day slaves face several critical problems and obstacles that severely restrict their capacity to be fully socially integrated persons,” said SIGNIS Asia president Mr. Lawrence John from Malaysia.

Explaining the urgency of the topic he said, “In most cases, their struggles require interventions by governments, civil society organizations and media.”

Stressing the need for providing visibility for their plight, film maker and SIGNIS India president Mr Sunil Lucas reiterated, “Visibility includes highlighting – to the general public and to specific authorities – their struggles and challenges, enabling their voice to be heard where it matters, conducting inclusive programs in which their involvement and participation is valued, and initiating and maintaining structures for their integral development.”

Malaysia is a hub for human trafficking, migrant workers and refugees of Asian countries. It is also the place to get a close look at what the secular media, NGOs, and Institutions are doing to make a difference.

“Our idea is to expose this situation to media practitioners, so that they can make a difference in their programming priority,” said SIGNIS Asia Secretary Miss Delia Hernandez from the Philippines.

The CEO of Racing Times and SIGNIS Malaysia President Mr Joe Fernando promised an exclusive screening of award-winning Indonesian feature film “Soegija” as one of the Assembly’s highlights.  The film, released three months ago, is directed by senior Indonesian director Garin Nugroho and tells the extraordinary story of Monsignor Soegijapranata, one of the architects of the United States of Indonesia in the 1940s.

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Signis Bengal to meet National Secy at Rangers Club

Fr Norbert Herman SVD

KOLKATA, (C.M. Paul) – In a letter sent out to Signis Bengal by its Secretary Mr Dilip Rozario, the Signis India president Mr Sunil Lucas has invited all Signis Bengal members “to Meet & Greet the SIGNIS India Secretary,” Divine Word missionary Fr Norbert Herman from Udaipur, Rajasthan.

Member of the National Signis India Executive, Fr Herman is visiting Kolkata en route to Bangkok to attend the FABC OSC (Federation of Asian Bishops Conference Office of Social Communications) meeting.

The two hour long Kolkata meet is being hosted at the Calcutta Rangers Club (Maidan Tent – opp Mohammedan Sporting Club on Red Road) on Sunday 2nd September 2012 from 4 pm to 6 pm.

The Calcutta Rangers Club is one of two Anglo Indian Clubs in the city. It has a green lawn, well-maintained tent with bar, a floodlit basketball court, air conditioned conference room and a canteen for its 300-odd members. The other exclusively Anglo-Indian Club is called The Grail Club.

SIGNIS (World Catholic Association for Communications) is a non-governmental organization that includes members from over 140 countries.

The India chapter of Signis established in 1972 under the name Unda/OCIC (Catholic Association for Radio, TV & Cinema) has some 250 Catholic media professionals spread out in 12 regional groups (Bengal being one) based on the 12 ecclesiastical regions of India.

Signis Bengal has some 20 members.

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OnLine Diploma Course in Pastoral Communications Launched

L to R: Mons. Tighe, Dr Mavely and Dr Plathottam

KOLKATA, (C.M. Paul)  – The Catholic Bishops Conference of India (CBCI) Commission for Social Communication and Signis India (Catholic Association for Communications) hosted a four-day seminar for students of theology from the major seminaries in India.

The theme of the seminar was: ‘Social Communication in Theological Formation- Paradigms for Pastoral Leadership’.

Monsignor Paul Tighe from the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, Rome, inaugurated the 2-5 October seminar held at Nitika Don Bosco, Kolkata.

On 4th October, the 50 plus participants attended a dawn Eucharistic celebration at the tomb of Blessed Mother Teresa. After the Eucharist presided over by Mons Tighe at Blessed Mother Teresa’s tomb, the Superior General of the Missionaries of Charity Sr Prema MC met the group and gave out the relics of the blessed.

“This first national seminar was part of the Church’s effort to enable seminarians to integrate communication in their formation and ministry,” said Secretary of the CBCI Commission for Social Communications Salesian Fr. Dr. George Plathottam.

The participants of CPL Kolkata October 2011

He recalled the CBCI statement following its General Assembly in 2004 on the theme “Called to be a Communicating Church” which stated: “Future priests should be adequately formed to proclaim the Word effectively and celebrate the Sacred Mysteries meaningfully. Efforts must be made to improve their communication skills. A proper media course should be part of the seminary curriculum. We urge that communications be integrated into all formation.”

In February 2010 the Commission for Social Communications launched a program for formation in social communication under the title: Communication for Pastoral Leadership (CPL). The 9-credit program for formation of seminarians was promoted across the country through the publication of three resource books and a DVD, a series of training programs for formators and the launching of a website (

Mons Tighe at Blessed Teresa tomb, 4 Oct 2011

Resource persons like Mons. Tighe (Vatican), Fr. George Plathottam (CBCI-OSC), Jesuit Fr Gaston Roberge (film theorist), Mr Barry O’Brien (celebrity quiz master), Christian Brother Brenden MacCarthy (Serve), Jesuit Fr George Ponodoth (EMRC), Ms Mini Joseph (Secretary of Bengal Commission for Social Communications), Ms Ruth Joseph (All India Radio presenter), Mr. Sunil Lucas (Signis India president), Dr Stephen Mavely (Vice-Chancellor of Don Bosco University and Salesian Fr C. M. Paul made practical presentations.

The seminar provided opportunities for the students to make their own presentations on the theme in the form of papers, short films, PowerPoint presentations and posters.

Some 50 students who participated at the seminar came from New Delhi, Pune, Bangalore, Allahabad and Barrackpore regional theological seminaries. They are expected to promote communication studies in their seminaries through formation of Media Clubs, celebration of World Communication Day, Media Education and other activities.

At the conclusion of CPL, 5 Oct, DBU Vice Chancellor and Mons. Tighe launched the CPL course consisting of a three phase pastoral communications course leading to a diploma granted by DBU. In the coming years, the fully on-line CPL course module open to all, is expected to graduate into an MA degree program.

In February 2010, the president of the Pontifical Commission for Social Communications Archbishop Celli launched a programme in Social Communication for the formation of pastoral leaders in India at the CBCI Centre in New Delhi. The three phase program with its specific books and study resources are promoted across the country through a series of workshops, meetings and training programmes.

Listen to Mons. Paul Tighe speaking to the Vatican Radio on Mother Teresa & the CPL seminar in Kolkata.

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DB Communications Institute Holds Intl Film Festival in November

DBFF2010 Kochi Logo

KOCHI (C.M. Paul) — Just one month after the launch of  Don Bosco IMAGE at Vennala, Kochi, with courses in film making, graphic design and animation, the premier Multimedia Centre is organizing a FILM FESTIVAL for movie makers across the globe.
“The objective of Don Bosco Film Festival (DBFF) is to promote the creative and technical skill of the up-coming generation and to enable them to become agents of social transformation for creating a better world,” says festival director and founder director of DB Image Fr Jiji Kalavanal.
“The competition will be held in two categories,” explains Fr Jiji, himself an award wining film director, citing two groups for this year’s festival.
They are: “Short Films and Documentaries” and “Micro Films – documentary and short animation movies.”
Fr Jiji quickly adds, “There is no specific theme for this year’s festival.” However, he assures “the documentary in the micro category is restricted exclusively to any place, cultural festival, historic monument, lifestyle, livelihood and traditions of Kerala.”
The last date of submission to the first ever DBFF festival is 30th October 2010.
A selection committee consisting of a panel of eminent cinema industry personalities will preview and select the movies for the final round to be held at Don Bosco IMAGE, in November 2010.
Attractive cash awards and citations will be awarded to the winners in both categories. For more details visit DBFF2010 official site:

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Mother Teresa Film Festival set to travel first time

Mother Teresa Intl Film Festival logo

KOLKATA  (C. M. Paul) – The third edition of Mother Teresa International Film festival, scheduled for 26-29 August is set to travel for the first time… MTIFF2010 unlike previous editions will not end with the four day festival at Nandan, West Bengal Government Cinema Centre in Kolkata. It will travel to about one hundred other cities within India, in a relay fashion right up to December 2010,” says festival director Mr. Sunil Lucas.
Simultaneous MTIFF2010 is being hosted nationally and internationally till the end of the year 2010 with the assistance of SIGNIS (Catholic International media Organisation) members across 15 participating countries and counting.
“MTIFF 2010 is absolutely non-commercial in nature with free entry pass/cards and depends entirely on generous benefactors for all unavoidable expenses like taxes, venue, screenings, publicity, printing and stationary,” adds the Signis-Bengal president, Sunil Lucas. “It is open to the general public.”
To take the concept of a “travelling” film festival even further, MTIFF2010 has gone out on rail – the Indian Railways is adding a dedicated coach to the Mother Teresa Heritage Exhibition train which will be touching places across India, spending days at major stations, for public to visit and watch a selection of the movies from MTIFF2010.
On the occasion of Mother Teresa birth centenary, the Central Railway Minister, Bengal’s own Mamata Banerjee, besides flagging off the heritage train, 26 August Mother Teresa’s birthday, will also re-name Kolkata’s Metro Rail Park Street station as Mother Teresa Station.
In addition, Metro Rail will screen a couple of festival films through its closed circuit television system, across its network of 23 stations, during the MTIFF 2010 Kolkata festival days.
For well wishers and Mother Teresa fans across the world, MTIFF2010 has its own TV station – on the web. Viewers can watch FestTV on www.mti for videos by SIGNIS Student Video Journalists as well as trailers, interviews and testimonies of common people on Mother Teresa. In addition to two channels, there is even a web channel for live coverage of MTIFF2010 from Nandan cine complex.
MTIFF 2010 has 15 official films from seven countries (Japan, USA, Italy, Spain, Canada, Lebanon and India) with two full length feature films, one short feature film as well as 12 documentary films of various duration. More than half the films will have their premier shows in India.
The first ever MTIFFs was held in Kolkata to mark Mother’s beatification in 2003 and a second MTIFF was held in Berhampore to mark her 10th death anniversary and the installation of her larger than life statue at the Murshidabad district headquarters in Berhampore, 2007.

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