THE 45th Catholic Mass Media Awards (CMMA) recently concluded, honoring 52 exceptional mass media professionals and institutions for their outstanding dedication to promoting Christian values across diverse media platforms.

Held at the Citystate Tower Hotel in Ermita, Manila, the event recognized winners selected from 205 finalists spanning print, radio, television, advertising, music, the Internet, and Student CMMA categories.

Since its inception in 1978 by the late Jaime L. Cardinal Sin, the CMMA continues to champion individuals and entities devoted to the mission of serving God through mass media.

In his welcome address, CMMA Chairman D. Edgard A. Cabangon expressed deep gratitude for the overwhelming support extended by media practitioners towards this year’s CMMA. He emphasized the significance of honoring excellence in crafting media content that embodies the highest human values.

LATE veteran broadcast journalist Miguel Castro “Mike” Enriquez is this year’s recipient of the Serviam Award (Posthumous). Receiving the award is GMA First Vice President for Radio Operations Group Glenn F. Allona. (Photo by Arvin Estrada)

Cabangon remarked, “Tonight, we give honor to excellence. To be recognized in this important event is the excellent way media practitioners crafted their body of work that communicates the promotion of the highest human values.”

This year’s CMMA theme, “Speaking With the Heart: The Truth in Love, Ephesians 4:15,” aligns with current societal challenges, emphasizing the role of media practitioners in shaping the perspectives and character of society. The theme underscores the vital responsibility of media professionals in disseminating truth and love through their craft, a sentiment echoed by Cabangon.

Cabangon highlighted the leadership and guidance of CMMA Honorary Chairman and Archbishop of Manila Jose F. Cardinal Advincula, D.D.: “Our heartfelt thanks to you, Cardinal Advincula for your relentless support as we give our best to continue CMMA’s legacy of ‘speaking the truth in love’ through the recognition of various works showcasing Christian values and morals.”

CMMA Honorary Chairman and Archbishop of Manila Jose F. Cardinal Advincula, D.D. delivers his keynote speech. (Photo from TV Maria)

The keynote address delivered by Cardinal Advincula resonated deeply with the audience. Cardinal Advincula urged media professionals to harness the power of truth with empathy and love:

“To speak with the heart is to speak the truth in love. As media practitioners, you are categorically required to gather and broadcast the truth and not fake news or lies. But you must do so always in charity and in love. This does not mean sugarcoating or manipulating the facts to suit one’s narrative. This means that we try to “look at one another with compassion, welcoming our mutual frailties with respect rather than judging by hearsay and sowing discord and division.”

Cardinal Advincula emphasized the urgent need for truthful, uplifting, and empathetic communication in today’s media landscape, stressing the significance of delivering messages with respect, humility, and a genuine concern for humanity.

“The mass media community must do its part in advocating for a fair, honest, and diligent delivery of their messages. We are grateful for the technological advances in mass and mediated communication platforms. Thanks to the digital media, most of us are given a chance to express our voices and create our own content,” he also remarked.

During the 45th CMMA, two special awards were also presented. The Serviam Award, honoring individuals or organizations significantly contributing to evangelization and the transmission of human values through mass media, was posthumously awarded to the late veteran broadcaster Miguel Castro “Mike” Enriquez.

The St. John Paul II Award, which acknowledges individuals, groups, or organizations utilizing mass media innovatively to communicate the gospel message to the broadcast sector of the community, was conferred upon Dominus Est PH—an independent online evangelization ministry operated by Stardust Publishing.

The 45th Catholic Mass Media Awards will be aired on CNN Philippines and Aliw Channel 23 on December 10, 2023, at 10 PM and on TV Maria on December 31, 2023, at 10 PM.

THE EVENT was hosted by Rev. Fr. Hans Magdurulang, CMMA Judges Coordinator; Cheryl Cosim, OnePH and TV5 News Anchor; and Kim Atienza, GMA Network News Anchor and Host. (Photo from TV Maria)