Pope Francis confers Knighthood on Malaysian former SIGNIS VP for commitment to social communication
Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI encouraged us to communicate the Gospel by approaching new media through the lens of our missiology
Every year. SIGNIS screens project applications on media training, equipment and production for a subsidy from the Pontifical Society of the Propagation of Faith (PSPF). In 2020, we launched the signisprojectapplication.net online portal, successfully switching from a paper-based to a fully digital application process and making it easier for applicants from all over the world to submit their projects.
One of the recipients of PSPF’s grants was the Diocese of Shinyanga, in Tanzania, which asked for new equipment - such as computers and cameras - in order to enable the day-by-day running of their radio - Radio Faraja FM.
The Shinyanga Region is one of Tanzania’s regions and it covers an area of 18.555 square kilometers. Their economy is mostly founded on agriculture and internet, telephone, radio, and postal services are all available for the citizens of this region. The three predominant tribes of the Shinyanga region are the Sukuma, Nyamwezi, and Sumbwa tribes and around 700.000 of the inhabitants of this area are Catholic.
Radio Faraja FM is a Community Catholic Radio Station, established in June 2001 by the Diocese of Shinyanga, whose aim is to be a medium of authenticity and accuracy towards quantitative and qualitative development of the people of this region of Tanzania. Gertrude Thomas, PR Officer of the radio station, claimed that the presence of SIGNIS in their community has strengthened their ways in evangelization, as well as in education, and that the radio project is helping them deliver a formation that may lead to collective spiritual growth of their community.
The necessity of an implementation of the project came from the need to be up-to-date and still relevant in the region by using modern tools and avant-garde means of communication. The lack of these tools would have weakened the delivery of evangelization services in the community since these processes are heavily influenced by the efforts and presence of Radio Faraja FM.
According to Ms. Thomas, the implementation of this project has not only strengthened their technical capacities, but has also pushed the members and workers of the radio to further expand their knowledge and provide better, more captivating content for the community.
These types of projects significantly increase the enthusiasm for evangelization, as well as the overall spiritual well-being of entire communities.