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By John Bookser Feister

The Changing Face of Catholic Media

Q U I C K S C A N

Newcomers Abound
Web Pick
Check Out


Catholic publishing and broadcasting are expanding into something new on the Web. Of course, traditional Catholic publishers are building Web sites, with all manner of success. A few, like this publication, are finding ways to integrate audio, video and print on the Web. You’ll find a good list of familiar publishers at www.catholicpress.org.

Familiar organizations like Eternal Word Television Network (www.EWTN.com), Maryknoll (www.Maryknoll.org) and The Christophers (www.christophers.org) have found a new outlet for their broadcast-quality radio and TV programs.

Newcomers Abound

But a meeting of all Catholic Internet publishers would largely be a meeting of strangers. Three pioneers who acquired the most easily recognizable domain names (Catholic.com, Catholic.org, Catholic.net) were not big players in Catholic publishing. Catholic.com is a California-based apologetics ministry related to the Catholic Answers Live radio show and Karl Keating’s This Rock.

Catholic Online (www.Catholic.org), of Bakersfield, California, hosts sites and content from Catholic organizations worldwide. Catholic.net was launched with Vatican endorsement in 1995, and recently joined Catholic Twin Circle Publishing Group, initiating a Spanish site as well.

Another newcomer, brimming with resources, is e3mil.com, a San Diego, California, start-up now linked with the Archdiocese of Miami for a Spanish version, and with a South Carolina marketing firm for direct sales of Catholic goods. CatholicWeb.com is another Florida venture that sets out to channel Catholic publications, including this one, into parish Web sites.

There’s a new breed of Catholic publishing at sites not affiliated with the Catholic Church such as www.Beliefnet.com (which often reprints articles from Catholic Web sites) and even the Catholic sections of www.About.com and www.Yahoo.com. Such sites may not be authoritative sources for official Catholic teaching, but they might bring countless thousands into contact with the culture of Catholicism.

Many of the newcomers seek profits. The rapid rise and fall of multimillion-dollar IBelieve.com makes one wonder how long some will last.



Web Pick

www.holidays.net/easter/recipes.htm
Did you ever see the classic Franciscan Communications video, Grandma’s Bread? This site has the recipe for Italian Easter bread, as well as for other breads, pies, cookies and candies.

Check Out

PARISH
www.masstimes.org
This is not a parish site. Rather, it’s a database of Mass schedules from parishes all over. Here’s a way to save trouble planning for travel, or even to visit a neighboring parish. There’s not a lot of graphic design here, but the site is very useful. You can search by city or zip code.

MEDIA
www.catholic.net
Mentioned in the accompanying column, Catholic.net is now a hybrid of the old Twin Circle Catholic Publishing with a 1995 Web start-up. The site is chock-full of Catholic news and articles from a variety of sources. Twin Circle had been bought in 1999 by the Legionnaires of Christ.

GROW YOUR FAITH
www.forwardmovement.org
From the Episcopalians comes Forward Day by Day, a tradition of daily biblical inspiration, now on the Web and downloadable to Palm Pilots. The pamphlet has been widely circulated for decades. The Web is causing the Christian community to rub shoulders more closely.

 


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