COICOM – an association of Latin American Christian communicators, producers and distributors – held its annual conference online this year on October 14-17. About 10,000 participants attended the various sessions and workshops. In fact, so many people tried to connect on Thursday, October 15, that the page collapsed.
The purpose of the conference was to train, equip, connect and mobilize the communicators who registered. Over 50 guest speakers covered topics from effective interviewing techniques, to digital discipleship, to media and technology in the church, and more.
As a board member since 1997, Ernesto Pinto has been instrumental in leading the association and planning annual conferences. This year’s online event was a change from past conferences which were held in various Latin American locations. While the board was thrilled with the success and exceptionally high attendance, COICOM president Arnold Enns commented, “We missed the connection with people: sharing personally with them and having coffee together.”
Pictured: Ernesto and Marina attended CICOM in El Salvador in 2019. One man from a radio station in a remote mountain village told them that Encuentro is the radio program they air the most. This man also shared that he and his group had travelled eight hours by horseback, eight hours by boat, and then eight hours by car to get to the conference. That’s how important it was to them to get to the conference and connect with other Christian broadcasters.
We in Canada have access to so much programming that we sometimes lose sight of how precious it is to hear the Word of God on the radio. This man and his friends are a reminder of the value of Christian media.