I just completed putting the finishing touches on Beyond Sunday: Becoming a 24/7 Catholic – a book and parish program being released by Our Sunday Visitor this spring. The main theme focuses on helping Catholics apply, live, and truly celebrate the beauty of their Catholic faith, not only during Mass, but well beyond that one hour on the weekends.
One of the best ways to do that, I argue in the book, is to truly embrace and apply your faith; to be able to, as my friend and Catholic radio colleague, Al Kresta always says, “look at everything through the lenses of Scripture and the teachings of the Church.”
Even those among the 24% still meeting their weekly Mass obligation find this challenging since, as Greg Erlandson, Director and Editor in Chief of Catholic News Service, explains, they rely on the secular media as their information source, including information about the Catholic Church. In an article he wrote on the topic in the January issue of Legatus Magazine, Erlandson explained that the media usually ignores religion unless there is some sort of crisis or scandal. As a result, Catholics are likely tainted by a negative, or at least a very limited view of their faith.
“Unfortunately, most Catholics today rely on secular media for their information about the Church. Not only does this mean they get a sparse and selective coverage of Church news, too often they get nothing at all. If a bishop issues a statement, in other words, and no one hears it, does it exist?”
Even some of those at the very top of the so-called media elite heap, admit they do a poor job of covering religion. In an interview, Dean Baquet, the executive editor of the New York Times told the Business Insider that the media not only don’t understand religion, but they also are for the most part clueless when it comes to the important role it still plays in the lives of many Americans.
“.. I think that the New York-based — and Washington-based too, probably — media powerhouses don’t quite get religion. We have a fabulous religion writer, but she’s all alone. We don’t get religion. We don’t get the role of religion in people’s lives. And I think we can do much, much better.”
That’s why I’m hoping more Catholics, and other Christians, will start this New Year resolving to utilize the best sources available that will enable them to learn to fully embrace the Good News of Jesus. And for those of you saying, “I can’t fit anything else into my busy day,” there’s a relatively new outlet with the same name “The Good News,” that’s doing a great job of more than just “getting religion.” The team at The Good News is giving believers what they need to know; news and information both faith-based and secular, and in a quickly digestible format for even the busiest of folks.
I discovered this outlet several months ago and it’s now a “go-to” source for me, not only in my own efforts to learn more about my faith, but in my preparation as a daily Catholic talk show host. This service includes the top headlines of the day with a brief description and links to reputable other Catholic news sources if the reader wants to read more. It also includes the Saint of the Day, daily Mass readings, quote and Podcast of the Day. It is really very unique and I like its encompassing format for busy Catholics.
Their motto, “Not Right. Not Left. Just Catholic.” is also important to me given the divisive and sensational way news is often covered in general.
So, do yourself a favor this New Year if you are still deciding on what resolutions to make this year. Subscribe to The Good News. It will truly help you —and pass it on as a reliable source to help others truly “get,” or bring religion back to the forefront of their daily lives.