Welcome to the NEW "catholicherald.com"
On our freshly designed site you`ll find everything you need to know about the Arlington Catholic Herald, the official newspaper of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Arlington.
You can browse local, national and international headlines, read the bishop`s latest homilies and search our classified ads. Find spiritual nourishment in the Your Faith section, and keep up on the latest editorials under Opinions. Check out upcoming events in your community or submit a letter to the editor. See a photo you like in the paper? You can order it right here. Own a local business? Place an ad wherever you`d like online or in print.
We hope that the redesigned catholicherald.com becomes, like the print version that is distributed to more than 61,000 faithful each week, your in-depth source for news, information and evangelization.
Catholic Herald Mission Statement
The following Mission Statement was written by Catholic Herald founding editor Charles W. Carruth when the paper was established in 1976. It remains as pertinent today as when it was first written.
THE EDITORS OF YOUR DIOCESAN PAPER will make every effort to give readers a balanced picture, week by week, of events and situations in the religious, moral and spiritual field. Some of these situations and events will please us, some may pain us.
It would be a tragedy for our readers not to keep in touch with the paper on a regular basis, because there is no other means of communication bringing the full picture of Christian thinking and reaction. But we must point out that we have no connection with intellectual "cliques" and we are totally unimpressed by labels such as "too liberal" or "too conservative."
When we analyze editorial policies and opinions as contrasted with straight news reporting, we must focus attention on the Catholic paper in light of Vatican Council II. Because of the great importance of the Catholic press, the Council gave it special consideration in its Decree on the Media of Social Communication.
The decree urges, "That worthy journalism should be encouraged, and that by way of thoroughly inculcating a Christian spirit in its readers, a Catholic press worthy of the name should also be established and supported. Let it be clearly edited with this goal: that it may form, strengthen and spread public views which are in harmony with the natural law and with Catholic teachings and precepts." In conclusion, the decree, "admonishes us that this sacred Synod trusts that all the sons of the Church will cordially welcome and religiously observe this program of precepts and guidelines."
This decree expresses the official mind of the Church as understood by the official teachers of the Church gathered in solemn council and guided as a body, in union with the Holy Father. We accept these decisions as the teachings of the Church, without restricting the special and peculiar Magisterium or teaching authority of the Holy Father, who, as the successor of St. Peter, has a unique responsibility to feed the whole of Christ's flock.
The first and foremost duty of a Catholic paper is to support the Church in its mission. Its duty certainly is not to stir up confusion in the minds of its readers by overemphasizing extreme views which are neither in accord with the traditional nor the conciliar teachings of the Church. To some today, words such as "tradition," "authority" and "prudence" have become archaic symbols totally unsuited to contemporary thought and experience. These terms, however, since Apostolic times, have enjoyed a place of honor in the Church because they are not only useful but necessary attributes of the Church in fulfilling her mission.
The fact that there may be some excesses in the application of such norms does not make them totally invalid for present conditions. They are still important in preventing liberty from degenerating into license and in guarding authority from the danger of tyranny. It may be that more freedom may be needed for the modern man, but that freedom must rely upon sound faith and judgment - a freedom that foresees and accepts responsibility for the effect of its actions - a freedom that does not discard tradition merely because it is tradition nor accepts change just for the sake of change.
We must never forget that the mission of the Church is to make men holy through Christ and the Holy Spirit. The Catholic press must ever assist in that mission, either directly or indirectly, through proper information, explanation, constructive criticism and inspiration. With the prudent application of the doctrines and norms established by Vatican Council II, the Arlington Catholic HERALD will find its true role as one of support for the Church in its divine mission.
The Catholic paper should also reflect the events which shape man's religious life here and now. Not all these happenings are pleasant to recall, but a paper which arbitrarily publishes only "favorable" news has already lost its base of credibility.
It is time for a new resolve among Catholics - a resolve to look upon the positive, rather than the negative. It is my fondest hope that our new diocesan paper will serve as an important channel of communication between the bishop and the people and between the people and the bishop with the result of bringing all of us closer together in our common goal - to bring Christ's message to all mankind. A fitting motto for the new paper would be the first line of St. Francis' prayer: "Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace!"