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  • Jessica Oata and Abigail Seta

5th film festival highlights hope

Updated: Aug 12, 2021

Port Moresby: The Social Communications Commission of CBC PNGSI held its 5th International Short Film Festival (ISFF21) that screened thirteen films that highlighted hope.


It was staged on 7th August 2021 at the Paradise Cinema, Vision City and was the climax of the Media Education Seminars 2021 (MES21) held for Catholic students throughoutthese past few months.

The three-hour program screened eight films by eight catholic schools in Port Moresby, two international groups from Nigeria and three local groups in PNG. Each film highlighted the theme: ‘Hope amidst COVID-19’ that brought about discussions and comments from an audience of over a hundred people.

Present at the ISFF21 were Fr. Jacek Pinocy, Secretary to the Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Fermín Emilio Sosa Rodriguez; Fr. Giorgio Licini, General Secretary of the Catholic Bishops Conference; Mr Joseph Manteit, Second Secretary to the Australian High Commissioner; Mr Hidajat Hanafi, Owner of Super Value Store (SVS); Fr Gregorio Bicomong, Salesian Provincial; representatives from different Media houses, local film producers, principals, animators, media students, and their friends and families.

According to Fr Jacek, the current pandemic challenged humanity in many ways and the short movies presented during the festival dwelled on almost all of them.

“I believe the youth understand very well that the pandemic is an opportunity for humanity. Seeing the talents and involvement of the young people who prepared the movies I am sure that the dream of the Pope to create the world based on the ideas of Saint Francis, the world of sharing their own skills in favour of others, can really come true,” Fr Jacek stated.

Apart from the screening was the presentation of the Media Education Seminar that had the students share on what they have learnt at the programs and how they can communicate messages of hope through the media. There was also a presentation of the MES awards together with certificates of participation.

Encouraging the young people, Fr Giorgio said to keep on studying and understanding the world of social communications since their lives are largely shaped by the messages coming from the media. He added that the effort at involving young people with a meaningful exercise in the world of media; the active participation, interest and creativity on the part of the students was what he liked about the festival.

The program concluded with a jubilant atmosphere as La Salle Technical College walked away claiming the first prize with their film titled ‘A Click of Hope.’ Kunai Haus Film titled ‘A Widow’s Prayer’ came in second placing while the gentlemen from De La Salle Secondary School came in third placing with their film titled ‘A Graceful Triumph.’

Secretary for Social Communications, Fr. Ambrose Pereira sdb, thanked all schools who participated in the media seminar and challenged them to continue to produce something that is not merely to entertain but to also spread a message that is positive.

“Communication is about sharing a message of hope. It is a platform to inspire. It is an opportunity to evangelize. This message was picked up by the participants and put into practice”, said Fr Ambrose.

The films are resources for Pastoral Ministry and can be used in schools, parishes, institutions and youth groups. They aim to develop a clear thinking and a critical mind in the midst of a world where there is misinformation, disinformation and mal information. The ISFF21 kit with the films in high resolution are priced at K50/-. Contact CBC SOCOMat socom@catholic.org.pg to purchase a kit today.

The program has been inspired by SIGNIS International and the Salesians of Don Bosco. It has the backing of CARITAS Australia, MISSIO, SVS Mart, Paradise Cinema, NBC, TV Wan, EMTV and the many others who believe in the media.

Comments from audience:

“Each Short Film had its positive message – loud and clear – there is always a tomorrow and other such words of encouragement amid threatening times. Mental Illness is a reality for some of our young people along with the terrible burden of poverty, unemployment, violence, family conflict, loss, and grief. Each offering was so well produced, so professional in the way the story was directed, and the characters played out. And there was plenty of laughter as students were entertained by their peers! Creativity was at a premium in each one of the short films.” – Sr Mary McCarthy, Secretary Conference of Women Religious, POM

“Everyone has to be accountable for how they look after themselves and protect themselves from COVID-19. We must not be complacent but grasp the message of hope that is being shown in the films.” – Rosa Koian, Editor of Wantok Niuspepa.

“At this this time of the pandemic, keep alive hope by inspiring others, to have a positive mindset.” – Abigail Uia Kaisi, Marianville Secondary Student.

“Hope is within each and every one of us and so we must share it with others and make use of the social media platforms to share the hope we have.” – Jack Keskala Jr, Catholic Theological Institute student.

“The MES students are front liners communicating messages of hope through social media”, Lucy Napatalai, DBTI Media Animator.





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