LiCAS News has been accepted as a regular member of the international Catholic media organization SIGNIS during its general assembly on Wednesday, September 15.
SIGNIS, or the World Catholic Association for Communication, is recognized by the Vatican as an International Association of the Faithful with the mission to “help transform cultures in the light of the Gospel by promoting human dignity, justice, and reconciliation.”
It has consultative status with UNESCO, the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations, in Geneva and New York, and the Council of Europe.
“Being part of SIGNIS will help us amplify the stories of people in the margins in Asia,” said Joe Torres, editor at large of LiCAS News. “It is something essential to our mission,” he said.
LiCAS News, a regional Catholic media organization, was established by the Roman Catholic Mission of Bangkok in 2019 “to be the light of the voiceless” by telling the stories “of those on the fringe of society in Asia.”
“It is our hope to journey with these communities and witness how the Church is reaching out to the people in the peripheries,” said Torres.
Peter Monthienvichienchai, LiCAS News executive director, said that being part of SIGNIS will help the Asian Catholic news organization reach out to other Catholic media producers around the world and “form partnerships for knowledge and content exchange.”
“We would also like to collaborate with and empower Catholic youths around the world to share their views, experiences, and challenges of being part of the mission of the Church,” said Monthienvichienchai.
“We can do this on our own, but the scale and reach would be exponentially greater with SIGNIS,” he added.
In his message to SIGNIS during its world congress in August, Pope Francis urged Catholic media communicators “to engage in dialogue and education to help deal with ‘lies and misinformation.’”
He encouraged Catholic communicators to persevere in efforts to counter disinformation and pay particular attention “to the need to assist people, especially young people, to develop a sound critical sense, learning to distinguish truth from falsehood, right from wrong, good from evil, and to appreciate the importance of working for justice, social concord, and respect for our common home.”
The pope also drew attention to “the many communities in our world that remain excluded from the digital space, making digital inclusion a priority.”