LAKE CHARLES – Changes will be introduced to some of the communications vehicles of the Diocese of Lake Charles beginning in July in an attempt to be more in touch with more of today’s media savvy Catholics.
Changes will include the introduction of a weekly “Bishop’s Message” video streaming on the website, while the Sunday morning Glad Tidings television program on KPLC-TV will be discontinued. A tab will be added to the front page of the site to allow for easy access to the weekly missive from Bishop Glen John Provost.
In addition, visitors to the website will be able to subscribe to the “Bishop’s Message” free of charge, with a link sent to the viewer’s e-mail address upon release of each new video. All videos will also be archived on the site so visitors may return to view previous messages.
Along with these changes, steps will be taken to strengthen and improve the website’s streaming capability for a better quality video along with other improvements in the coming months. Additionally, efforts have begun to start an “official” Diocese of Lake Charles Facebook page. An archive of previous Glad Tidings program will remain available to view on the diocesan website.
The Diocese of Lake Charles will continue the Catholic Calendar with a monthly two-page spread. However, beginning in July, the publication of the monthly single page edition of the Catholic Calendar in four regional newspapers - the Jennings Daily News, the Southwest Daily News, the Beauregard Daily News, and the weekly Cameron Pilot – will cease. That aspect of diocesan communications was added following the passage of Hurricane Rita in 2005 and its resulting long-term devastation. This was done in a concerted effort by the Diocese to provide those in need of assistance would know where such aid could be found and what the Diocese’s social service ministry was doing to assist those whose homes had been damaged or destroyed.
The two-page publication of the Catholic Calendar, currently being published twice monthly in the (Lake Charles) American Press will continue there but at a lesser frequency. Beginning in July, a new schedule will have the two side-by-side pages printed once a month, generally on the third Friday except for the month of December and the month in which Easter is celebrated. In the months of Christmas and Easter, the Catholic Calendar will be published twice, generally on the first and third Fridays – a total of 14 times yearly.
In speaking about the changes, particularly to Glad Tidings, Bishop Provost said, “In this age when fewer people are watching television and more people are turning to social media and the internet for news and updates, it is prudent for the Catholic Church to speak the Gospel through this media. We can see the Church responding to each generation through its media, and the Diocese of Lake Charles is approaching its message in the same way now through streaming video on its website that is sent directly to the faithful through email." "I would like to thank the people who since the inception of the Diocese contributed their time and talent to ‘Glad Tidings,’" the Bishop continued. “They should be acknowledged and thanked for their effort and fine programs throughout the years. I do not see this as a cancellation of a program, but a furtherance of the spread of the Gospel through the means of the modern and more current media."
“Glad Tidings” first aired on October 5, 1980 and has continued unabated until now. Then Father Sam Jacobs was tapped by Bishop Jude Speyrer to oversee the television programming and C. Kirby Raymond was hired to provide television production work. The Catholic Calendar was first printed in the American Press on Friday, September 8, 1982. At its inception, the Catholic Calendar was a single page published 18 times a year.