Brussels, January 22nd, 2018 (SIGNIS). Since 2015, Interfilm and SIGNIS, represented by the Catholic Film Commission of the Bishops' Conference in Germany, are presenting an award at the Ecumenical Jury at the Max Ophüls Festival in Saarbrücken, which starts today. This festival is the first of the year in which SIGNIS participates.

The € 2,500 ecumenical prize offered by the Catholic and Evangelical Adult Education Associations is awarded to a feature film of the official competition that expresses human, spiritual or social values.

For the 39th Max Ophuls Festival, the members of the Ecumenical Jury are:

Gerhard Alt (Germany): He studied German philology, philosophy and Catholic theology in Saarbrücken. Since 2008, he has been a teaching assistant of Catholic Adult Education (KEB) in the district of Saarlouis eV, and is in charge of the program of the seminar. Since 1998, he has been the moderator of the monthly event "Cave Philo" and since 1989, he has also been a freelance journalist.

Martin Oostermann (Germany): Born in Essen, he studied theology, philosophy and German in Bochum with a doctorate in fundamental theology. From 2003 to 2012, he worked in the field of dogmatic theology at the Catholic University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt. From September 2012 to August 2014, he was an education consultant in the Diocese of Erfurt at the Bildungshaus (Training House) St. Ursula, where he supervised "Theology in the Distance Course" and the "Basic Course of the Bible ". Since September 2014, he is responsible for the course of religious catechesis as director of the course of theology. His fields of activity are didactics, contemporary cultural phenomena, narratology and anthropology, and media education, with particular emphasis on film work, especially in a theological perspective.

Bernadette Meier (Switzerland): Since 1971 she has been a documentalist in different archives (TV- and Press archives) and since 1992 she has been working for the film magazine ZOOM and for the Swiss Film Archive (Cinémathèque suisse, Zweigstelle Zürich).  She has participated in several ecumenical juries.

Waltraud Verlaguet (France): Waltraud is a doctor of medicine and theology. She studied medicine in Germany and Switzerland from 1968 to 1974. From 1978 to 1993, she practiced general medicine in France. She then studied theology at the University of Montpellier (France) before completing her PhD in 2003. She is a member of INTERFILM and PRO-FIL, as well as the editor-in-chief of Vu de Pro-fil magazine. She is the author of numerous publications on mysticism and cinema. She is also the founder and president of the film festival "Ciné festival in Pays de Fayence" (France) and has already been a member of several ecumenical juries.