Amidst heavy rains and inclement climatic conditions, people came in huge numbers to get a glimpse of the spirit of Mother Teresa at the second day of the MTIFF 2010. The screening began at 10a.m, projecting all the shorts in honour of Mother Teresa, while the latter part of the day was dedicated to the feature films.
The festival came to a joyous conclusion with a cultural programme and sharing of experiences on the person of Mother Teresa. The dignitaries who added colour to the celebration were Sr. Mangala – Provincial Superior of the Sisters of Mother Teresa Chennai, Actress Suhasini Maniratnam, Actress Kushbu Sundar, Ms. Maala Maniyam – COO Raj Networks, Kavignar Snehan, and Director Gnana Rajasekaran – Director, SRM Sivaji Ganesan Film Institute, Rev. Fr. Ignatius Stanley – Principal of Don Bosco, Egmore. The cultural dance with colourful expressions and movements thrilled the audience as they entered into the concluding ceremony. “We are a fortunate lot to view these films on Mother Teresa and we have strived to make a fitting homage to our beloved Mother through MTIFF during her birth centenary”, reiterated the festival director Rev. Fr. Harris during his welcome address.
Rev. Sr. Mangala, while sharing her personal experiences of Mother Teresa expressed “Mother was born, lived and died for others. Her dreams, hopes, aspirations and yearnings were only for the betterment of the poor, sick, suffering and the needy. Her birth centenary is a beautiful invitation for all of us to join together and commit ourselves to do something beautiful for God”.
Actress Kushbu Sundar was really very excited when she shared about her meeting with Mother Teresa, and how she treasured in her house the note that Mother Teresa wrote and gave her “Kushbu, God bless you”. She moreover added, that Mother had never thought about herself, but had only been thinking of others, and a festival making us to think of Mother and about ourselves was very meaningful and appropriate.
Actress, Director Suhasini Maniratnam was very interactive in her sharing, making the audience feel very comfortable and expressive about their views on Mother Teresa. She affirmed, “Mother gave everything for others generously, she forgave wholeheartedly and let us have the same attitude in our life”. She congratulated the audience for having really honoured Mother Teresa with their participation in the festival, inspite of the heavy rains.
Director Gana Rajasekaran enumerated the outstanding qualities of Mother Teresa and said that all of us can imitate her virtues atleast in some small way. “Mother has taken nothing from this world, she has left us an infinite treasure by her life, and that is a great lesson for humanity and the society in all centuries to come” Kavignar Snehan was full of praise for Mother Teresa and started speaking with poetic exuberance narrating the greatness of Mother Teresa. He enthused the crowd, exhorting everyone to give without counting and to give before receiving, basing on the principle that Life itself as a gift has given so much to all of us and we should do the same.
All the dignitaries honoured Sr. Managala, the Provincial Superior of the Missionaries of Charity, Tamil Nadu by presenting her with a memento. The official collaborators were also felicitated and offered a memento. The fusion dance that followed, by the students of Don Bosco Egmore was a fitting finale for the evening celebration. The Joint Director of the festival, Rev. Fr. John Peter proposed the vote of thanks and the festival ended paying respects to the nation through the National Anthem.
Mother Teresa by Lux Vide (Italy), In name of God`s Poor (USA) by Dominique Lapierre, My Karma (India) by Korak Dey, The Fifth Word (Spain) by Pablo Marcet, Seeing the Face of Jesus (USA) by Morning Light Media, A Call within a Call by CBCI India, Mother Teresa – The Living Legend by Sunil Jindal, From Saint to Sainthood by Payal Mohanka, Precious Love (USA) by Hallel Videos, The Making of a Saint (Canada) by Pierre Belanger, The Revelation of Kolkata (France) and In the footsteps of mother by Delphine Prunault were the films that were screened during the festival.
The festival was a good avenue for all lovers and fans of Mother Teresa, to come and view films that revived and renewed her memory. Hats off to the Department of Information, Government of Tamil Nadu, Don Bosco Institute of Communication Arts and SIGNIS Bengal in collaboration with SRM Sivaji Ganesan Film Institute, I Volunteers, Big 92.7 FM, SIGNIS Tamil Nadu and Don Bosco Anbu Illam, for having championed the cause of Mother Teresa through the international film festival at Chennai.