Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
This month, our Diocese will take up the Catholic Communication Campaign (CCC) collection. As I reflect back on the past several years, the past two in particular, the role communications has played in our Diocese and our parishes has certainly evolved. Digital communications especially have advanced throughout our Diocese and I am pleased to see the number of parishes that are continuing to live stream Masses.
So what does this have to do with the Communications Collection? As we have all experienced, communications is a powerful resource and one that we can and do use in our ministries to further our evangelization efforts. However, furthering these messages comes at a cost, and this outreach can only continue to grow with the combined support of the people of the Diocese. Through this collection, you are directly supporting the communications ministry of our Diocese and the communications projects of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB).
In 2021, through support of the CCC, our Diocesan Communications Office produced 19 live-streamed conferences and Diocesan liturgies, nearly 80 video projects, over 100 podcast and radio programs, posted more than 1,000 messages to social media, and maintained five websites. It is estimated that more than 139,000 people watched or listened to these programs over that same period of time. While this office does receive some funding through the Diocesan Annual Campaign, these funds are not sufficient to support all our communication ministries. Your support of the CCC has allowed us to expand this ministry and better support the communication needs of our parishes and Catholic schools. I know we are in challenging times, but I ask you to prayerfully consider supporting this collection so that we may continue using communications to share the love of Christ.
Nationally, the USCCB supported the creation of a diocesan communications center in the West African country of Benin through the CCC. In the nation’s capital of Porto Novo, this center trains young people on how to witness to Christ through multimedia storytelling, in collaboration with a local professional. The training includes principles of radio and television interviews, written reporting, and social media communications. Other aspects of the multi-year project include technical training in graphic design, photography, videography, and production, equipping participants to make their reports and short films suitable for distribution through social media and the diocesan website.
Your support for the CCC helps the Church to utilize up-to-date technologies in communicating the joy of the Gospel. Not only does it help spread the faith, but it also helps form young disciples and gives them the practical skills they need to navigate today’s digital media environment. Consider giving at Mass or through your parish online giving platform. For more information about the collection and the projects it supports, or to give online, visit www.hbgdiocese.org/communications/catholic-communication-campaign. Thank you and may God bless you and your families.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Most Reverend Ronald W. Gainer, DD, JCL
Bishop of Harrisburg