Dear CE Community:
I am pleased to announce that I am handing over the reins of the CE presidency and editorship to noted Catholic writer and editor, Harold Fickett as of today, January 1, 2010. I will remain closely involved with Catholic Exchange as a member of the Board of Directors, editor-at-large and goodwill ambassador for the organization.
I want to thank all those who contributed to our year-end fundraising campaign, as its success has enabled us to bring Harold on board.
Harold Fickett has written many books, including works of fiction like The Holy Fool, biographies including Flannery O’Connor: Images of Grace, and works of inspiration and journalism, including Conversations with Jesus and The Living Christ. He has written for such publications as The National Review, Books & Culture, and even Slate.com. A convert from evangelical Protestantism to Catholicism of more than 20 years, Harold was heavily involved in developing the Catholic new media publication, GodSpy. He also co-founded the influential arts and religion journal Image. Catholic Exchange will benefit greatly from his leadership.
After nearly ten years as President of Catholic Exchange, I have found my interests turning more and more in the direction of producing films. This was spurred by my involvement in the distribution financing and promotion to Catholic audiences of The Passion of the Christ, the production of the Champions of Faith films, and my involvement in other film productions. I now have the opportunity to work as a producer of major film projects, for which I am deeply grateful to God. This change has been coming for some time, but I did not want to relinquish my role with Catholic Exchange until I had found the right new leader to replace me.
I want to thank everyone who has supported Catholic Exchange during the past 10 years. You have made my service an honor and a privilege. You have kept me company in our spiritual pilgrimage, and for that I will always be grateful. Our sojourning together will not be ending, just entering a new phase. I am looking forward both to my work as a film producer and to contributing to Catholic Exchange from a different perspective.
God bless you, my friends. I’ll be talking to you soon, I’m sure, through the pages of Catholic Exchange.
Harold Fickett writes:
My thanks to Tom for his kind introduction and to the Board of Directors, officers, and staff for the trust they have placed in me.
I consider Catholic Exchange a sacred trust, as I’ve come to know how much its users are sustained and encouraged by its features and articles. I want you to know that Catholic Exchange will continue in its faithfulness to the Church’s teachings. We will speak from the heart of the Church to the hearts of men and women for whom Christ suffered, died, and rose again.
The mission of Catholic Exchange is crucial to how we live individually and collectively. Evangelization entails allowing God to conform us more and more to the image of Christ; it means demonstrating God’s love to our families, friends, neighbors-and strangers and enemies, as well; it involves witnessing to God’s truth, goodness, and beauty; and it compels us to build a more hospitable, just, and peaceful world for believers and unbelievers alike.
Pope Benedict has enunciated Christ’s call to build a “civilization of love”: “We must have the courage to create islands, oases, and then great stretches of land of Catholic culture where the Creator’s design is lived out.”
That’s what Catholic Exchange has been all about and will continue to be about.
I see the next phase of Catholic Exchange’s life as being directed, particularly, to supplying resources with which to create these islands, oases, and great stretches of Catholic culture. The web is becoming an ever more efficient means of connecting people with one another and groups with the educational resources to carry out specific missions.
Going forward we hope to offer additional e-publishing resources, webinars, social networking, video conferencing, and more. I’ll be communicating more about this soon.
Right now I would just like to say thanks to Tom and the Board once again and express how eagerly I look forward to communicating with Catholic Exchange’s large and growing audience.
Every good thing,