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Catholic News – choosing the best ‘wheat’

May 10, 2017
Nun by profession, journalist by occupation
May 10, 2017
From the Editor
May 10, 2017

The influence of the media on society is profound; the tools of communication significantly shape the culture in such a way that one may properly ask, ‘how have the media facilitated or impeded our chances of survival?’

The question can be asked of the Catholic News in every decade. In the 1940s, the extent of its contribution to the society could be judged in concrete ways. Then, on the front pages, ads about ‘Everything for Baby’, schoolbooks, hurricane lanterns and cough mixture found a place side by side with stories about relativism and democracy, a call to the United Nations to guarantee religious freedom and words of Pope Pius XII to working women.

Today, in an environment overwhelmed by digital media and myriad voices, Catholic News has had to learn how to integrate with other media, which CAMSEL through its new media department and its association with TCN and other Church departments continues to work at. Recently, work has begun with other Church departments and groups to develop a comprehensive communication plan (See page 8).

In his message for the 51st World Communications Day, which will be celebrated on the last Sunday of this month, Pope Francis, following St John Cassian, speaks of the human mind as a “constantly grinding millstone”. For the past 125 years, Catholic News has been grinding away, choosing every week the best “wheat” it could find for the mill.

Selection of stories, the choosing and shaping of material, is a necessary function of every newsroom no less than ours. “Everything depends on the way we look at things, on the lens we use to view them,” says the Holy Father. The true lens, he says, is “the good news that is Jesus himself”. It is a focus that in every generation Catholic News has sought to keep so all can be fed.

Today we thank God for the graces He has granted to the paper and its staff over the years. It is a sobering yet deeply gratifying thought, to consider that we can only have faithfully performed the task, been engaged in the mission that we have, only because God has been constantly with us.