Catholic, Protestant groups team up for European TV Festival of Religious Programmes

(Photo: Courtesy SIGNIS-WACC)The National Broadcasting Company in Hilversum, Netherlands in March 2014.

SIGNIS (the World Catholic Association for Communication) and WACC (World Association for Christian Communication) will hold the 18th European Television Festival of Religious Programmes in June.

The pre-selection jury for the competition in the festival, which will be held from June 11 to 14 in Hilversum, Netherlands has begun its work, organizers said.

The festival is normally held every three years.

It provides an opportunity to present and reward the best of European television programmes that express, explore and examine values in relation to religion, faith and ethics.

Started in 1969, the festival also aims to encourage networking and co-production, particularly between European producers and broadcasters and promote the development of innovative and popular religious broadcasting.

The festival will also include a high-level seminar on the theme: "Behind the Front Door or In Plain Sight: Religion in a Pluralist Society."

Organizers say that in today's Europe religion is acknowledged to be a powerful and influential shaper of social and cultural attitudes and behaviour.

At the same time, however, the place of religion in the public square is under challenge. Questions of pluralism, cultural diversity and identity are increasingly central to public debate.

The meeting aims to examine what contribution could religious programmes offer in this climate of opinion.

It will also look at how religious broadcasting can help to build bridges of understanding in pluralist societies in which religion is often presented as a polarising and divisive force.

The main partners for the festival are: Evangelische Omroep (, Roman Catholic Church Broadcasting (Roman Catholic Church broadcasting ( and IKON ( Netherlands Interdenominational Broadcasting that represents represents eight Protestant Christian churches and other faith communities.

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