SIGNIS World President: "A Congress for Change"
Chang Mai, October 16, 2009 (SIGNIS) - "We will have a Congress for change and a Congress with a difference" said SIGNIS World President Augustine Loorthusamy on welcoming the participants of the SIGNIS World Congress in Chiang Mai.
- SIGNIS President Augy Loorthusamy: "This Congress must build bridges"
"This is a unique Congress bringing together the creativity of children, young people and communication professionals. This Congress must be one of difference and a Congress for change" said Augy Loorthusamy in his welcome message.
"If the theme of our Congress is Media for a Culture of Peace it is because our world is still marked by bloody and destructive conflicts; the rights of millions of people have been violated. People continue to be exploited, abused and killed. The pursuit of peace is our reason for existence. This what the Church is all about.
This is going to be a Congress with a difference because our theme is also about Children’s Rights. Two thirds of our world population is made up of young people and they too have become the subject of violence, abuse and exploitation. They are our future and so they must be our concern. If this Congress is to bring change then it must be a Congress to build bridges. Too often the rights of the young have been ignored by the media itself. Youth have a right to demand truth and respect from the media. They have a right to become involved and participate to the media. We, as adult professionals, must facilitate this. You will see our first attempts, in this Congress, where you see many young people creatively and actively involved. We need their imagination to see the truth and to help engage in the task of bringing about life changing programs and activities.
This Congress must also build bridges between and among people of all faiths. It is not by accident that this Congress is being held in a Buddhist nation. If SIGNIS is to be a communication arm of the Church then, necessarily, it must consciously carry out its mission with people of all faiths.
We must also be a bridge between the Church and secular media working together in mutual respect and on mutual concerns. And so we have brought media resource persons to show us the way.
We will have a Congress for change and a Congress with a difference."