Thu. May 23rd, 2024


The 47th Japan Catholic Film Award presentation and screening of the film “A Mother’s Touch” (Japanese title: “Cherry blossom-colored Wind Blooms”), directed by Dir. Jumpei Matsumoto, took place on June 2, 2023, at Kagura-za in Iidabashi, Tokyo. It had been three years since the screening was last held due to the pandemic. While we had continued to host the Award ceremonies and talks between the directors and Fr. Masahide Haresaku, SIGNIS JAPAN advisory priest with only very small participants involved, the joy of watching a film together with the audience was missing. We wondered when we would be able to hold screenings again. We understand that COVID-19 is still a concern, but if we let fear dictate our actions, we won’t be able to accomplish anything. Screenings cannot be postponed indefinitely. In the midst of these concerns, we encountered an incredible film, “Mother’s Touch.”

This film tells the story of Satoshi Fukushima, who became a university professor for the first time in the world while losing his vision and hearing. Based on a true story, it has been highly praised in the selection process as a sincere and heartwarming hymn to humanity. The desire to screen this film and share its impact with everyone became the driving force to overcome the anxieties surrounding COVID-19. Screening the film in a small venue might not be financially feasible, but we were prepared to do it. However, on the day of the event, there was heavy rain due to an approaching typhoon. Some thought they might not be able to return home because the trains might stop, yet there were others who came to the venue drenched. We are deeply grateful to everyone who came despite the heavy rain. “We got wet, but it was worth it. I was moved by the film and the discussion.” These kinds of comments from the audience serve as motivation for our future activities. The journey towards next year’s screening has already begun.