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     Home > Culture and Society  >  2014-02-20 14:08:42
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International Catholic media body honors Indian film theory guru

February 20, 2014: A Catholic world communications body has decided to honor a Jesuit priest, who was an associate of legendary filmmaker Satyajit Ray and India’s film theory guru and pioneer of media education in the country. Signis World will confer Canadian Jesuit Fr Gaston Roberge with the Life Time Achievement Award during the closing ceremony of its World Congress in Rome on February 27.

“The Award recognizes Signis members who have made outstanding contributions in the field of Catholic communication,” says Signis Secretary General Alvito D’Souza. Monsignor Roland Abou Jaoude, founder of the Catholic Information Centre in Lebanon, will also receive the same award. “I receive the Signis award in the name of God. If I did anything worth mentioning it is because the Compassionate Lord enlightened me and give me the courage to do the needful. Accepting the award is a way for me to thank and praise the Lord,” Father Roberge said when told about the award.

Born in Montreal in 1935, Fr Gaston Roberge first came to India as Jesuit missionary in 1961. In 1970, he founded the Chitrabani communications center in Kolkata and directed it for 26 years until 1996. Created with the support of legendary film director Satyajit Ray, the center has the only independent film library in Kolkata. In 1980, Fr Roberge became the first broadcaster of the Radio Veritas Asia Bengali program, and 12 years later he started Chetana (Awareness), an adult education program through radio focusing on rural women.

In 1986, Fr Gaston started the Educational Media Research Centre (EMRC) of St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata and directed it for ten years. He has published books on communication, cinema, human development and spirituality. His book Communication Cinema Development received a national award at the 46th National Film Festival of India in 1999.

Gaston Roberge continues to be the senior faculty member at the Department of Mass Communication and Videography at St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata. After a three year stint as Executive Secretary for Social Communication, at the Society of Jesus Rome Headquarters Fr Gaston was Head of Department of Communications, St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata, until 2001.
(Source: Mattersindia.com )


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