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SIGNIS trains African Catholic journalists on effective reporting of Refugees.

The Chairman for the Social Communication Commission of Uganda Episcopal Conference Bishop Emeritus of Lira diocese Giuseppe Franzelli has called upon Catholic Journalists to start educating the Masses rather than only informing them.

“We are asked to communicate Christian values in our Journalism and we should educate people and not only inform them,” said Bishop Franzelli.

The Bishop Emeritus said this at a SIGNIS Catholic Journalist, Media Professionals and civil Society training on effective and efficient reporting on Migrants and refugees taking place at St Mary’s Seminary’s National Seminary In Ggaba.

He added that we are all children of God so the refugees and migrants are brother and sisters and the awareness of being one family should grow among us all.

Bishop Franzelli also noted that this workshop should give us a chance to work towards educating and pulling out and strengthening what God has put in the mind of the Migrants.

The Chairman of Uganda Episcopal Conference Bishop Anthony Joseph Zziwa told the media practioners at the workshop that the place of the Catholic media is integral in the role of the Universal Church and so media needs to support the cause.

He added that like Jesus who offered hope to people and like the Prophets who spoke of the return survival in the New Jerusalem so should be the journalist offer hope to the refugees and migrants. Bishop Zziwa noted that journalists should be the mouthpiece of refugees and Migrants because the media is accepted universally.

He said, “ World wide, the media is universally accepted, so as Catholic journalists we must go beyond this code. The Catholic Social teaching because it’s these that make the catholic journalist unique.”

The Chairman Episcopal Conference also added that the Pope emphasized duty to speak with the heart to allow dialogue and engage in promoting dialogue.

He encourages the journalists to take up the challenge of promoting dialogue seriously.

Meanwhile Dr. Paolo Ruffini the prefect Dicastery for Communications at the Vatican said Pope Francis’ vision of Migrants and refugees is a lesson for media workers.

He also said that refugees and Migrants should be given freedom to come and go back freely. Dr. Paolo noted that the Vatican is interested in building bridges and breaking walls.

He called upon journalists to listen to the cry of migrants and refugees and make their aspirations known to the world.

Dr. Paolo  added that the world needs communicators who are open to dialogue, he invited Catholic journalists to explore the pastoral orientation of inter-cultural migrant ministry and the good practices of good community in the world in their efforts to enlarge the tent, he said that as journalists they are dwellers in the tent too. So he also invited the journalists to promote the dignity of all people and the right to remain in their homeland.

He concluded saying, “ May the Lord Jesus incarnate word help us make Catholic communication clear, focused and heartfelt.”

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