Taipei, September 29th, 2016 (SIGNIS). From September 9 – 12, the TV Desk of SIGNIS held its annual meeting for TV professionals. This year, it’s the vibrant city of Taipei, Taiwan that was chosen to welcome this group. About forty professionals from 12 countries and four continents met to discuss and exchange on the theme “Imaging the Church in our productions”.

At the opening ceremony, we had the pleasure to be welcomed by the Most Rev. Philip Huang, the Bishop of Hualien. He said that “although the Taiwan Catholic community is quite small and young compared to other countries, they feel very honoured and privileged to be chosen as the host country”. The ceremony was followed by Taiwanese food, music and dances. A great way to start off this seminar!

The second day started by a keynote address by our guest: Dr. Natasa Govekar, the director of the department of Pastoral and Theology of the new Secretariat for Communications of the Vatican. She challenged the participants on how to communicate “the Church” in their productions, through language and images. After her speech, the participants had the opportunity to have an open discussion with her, asking her questions, and debating multiple issues. She stayed for the whole seminar and at the end gave us brief reactions to what she had observed in our productions and conversations.

This year, the usual “Show and Tell sessions” were replaced by “Case studies sessions”. Each participant showcased one of its productions, and was then asked questions about it. This new way of working was pleasant for everybody, and allowed people to be very participative.

The next morning, three important Taiwanese televisions came to talk to the participants. First, Ms Winifred Yeh, the Vice-President of the Christian Good TV Station talked about how they try to reach Chinese worldwide, and how they bring faith, hope and love to each family.

Then, Dr. Rey-sheng Her, the spokesman of Da Ai TV, told the participants about the “constructive Journalism”. Da Ai TV is a Buddhist television channel, which only highlights positive news and actualities.

Finally, Fr. Jerry Martinson, chairperson of Kuangchi Program Television, and SIGNIS member, has talked about the many programmes that KPS has been producing and broadcasting for the last 60 years.

The participants also discussed the future of the TV Desk and the importance of social media for TV professionals. Finally, they had the opportunity to see some of Taipei’s most important cultural sites, such as the Tchang Kaï-chek Memorial, the National Palace Museum and the Taipei 101 Tower.

Next year, as SIGNIS will hold its World Congress in Québec city June 19-21, 2017, the TV Desk tentatively decided to hold its next seminar right before it. Plan now to join us!

See all the pictures here.