Celebrating 100 years of Catholic journalism in Illinois

This year the Catholic Times, newspaper of the Diocese of Springfield, Ill., is celebrating 100 years of reporting on local church news for Catholics as well as covering the universal church and the world.

The May 17 issue includes the latest installment in an ongoing “retrospective” of stories the Times has published in the last century. This one focuses on the period of 1930-39. Archivist Michele Levandoski writes that the editor at the time, Msgr. Martin J. Foley, “seemed especially interested in the events in Germany and Spain.”

“The paper reported on anti-Catholic measures implemented by Hitler, such as the elimination of church-supported organizations and catholic schools. The paper also ran numerous stories about the Spanish Civil War and how rebels targeted Catholic churches and clergy,” she says. A couple of the highlighted stories were written by Catholic News Service, then called known as the National Catholic Welfare Council News Servce.

Pope’s appeal for World Communications Day

VATICAN CITY — At the end of the weekly general audience today, Pope Benedict XVI launched an appeal to everyone who uses new communications technology, especially young people:

This coming Sunday, the church celebrates World Communications Day. In my message this year, I am inviting all those who make use of the new technologies of communication, especially the young, to utilize them in a positive way and to realize the great potential of these means to build up bonds of friendship and solidarity that can contribute to a better world.

The new technologies have brought about fundamental shifts in the ways in which news and information are disseminated and in how people communicate and relate to each other. I wish to encourage all those who access cyberspace to be careful to maintain and promote a culture of respect, dialogue and authentic friendship where the values of truth, harmony and understanding can flourish.

Young people in particular, I appeal to you: bear witness to your faith through the digital world! Employ these new technologies to make the Gospel known, so that the Good News of God’s infinite love for all people, will   resound in new ways across our increasingly technological world!

You can find the full text of the pope’s message for 2009 here.

And don’t forget to go to the new Pope2you.net website on Sunday when it goes live. It’s sponsored by the Pontifical Council for Social Communications to help celebrate the day and get the pope’s message out there. It will have links to the Vatican’s new Facebook and iPhone applications and YouTube channel.

Also, in my own attempt to use new technologies, here’s an experiment creating an audio slide show using CNS pictures (apologies for the poor audio quality, but it really is the pope speaking):