Our Sunday Visitor receives 9 awards from the Catholic Press Association

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It’s a great joy and privilege of my life to be able to live out a vocation in the Catholic press. I think the work that we do at Our Sunday Visitor is not only exemplary, but important, and I am blessed with a wonderful staff that has gone above and beyond in producing excellent content while adjusting to a new reality of remote working.

Happily, I am not alone in my thinking. Please permit me to spend a few hundred words tooting the horn of my wonderful colleagues who were recently recognized for excellence by the Catholic Press Association.

The nine awards received by Our Sunday Visitor this year range from honors in content, to layout and design, to last year’s redesign.

In terms of content, Our Sunday Visitor was recognized for a diverse range of stories, from clergy sexual abuse to supporting college students in faith. Brian Fraga, one of Our Sunday Visitor’s contributing editors, received first-place honors for his in-depth reporting on the seal of confession.

“Interviews and insights along with history and canon law make this article a great read on the seal of the confessional,” the judges wrote. “Especially as the seal is challenged today in places like California where challenges — especially in the case of clergy abuse. From the fist confessors to St. John Nepomuk a quality read saying why priests would die to protect the internal forum of the confessional, and what that means in the political sphere today.”

In a second place award for our special college section “Finding a Support System on Campus,” the judges wrote: “If every struggling college student could read this outstanding effort their life might be much easier because, while they may recognize the need for a support system, they may not be able to break that need down to bite sized snacks. So, here it is — how to juggle relationships and responsibility, make sure Christ is your foundation, some secrets to success, finding friends of faith, and reminders of the role parents and professors play in the college life story.”

In a third place award for the explanation of marriage, Brian Fraga, Michelle Martin and Leonard J. DeLorenzo were honored for their interesting content and clear writing. And an honorable mention recognized Fraga, Ava Lalor and the Our Sunday Visitor Editorial Board for contributions in the area of community violence.

We also received an honorable mention for one of our annual vocations special sections — “A Window Into Their World.” And an honorable mention for our coverage of the clergy sexual abuse crisis, with nods going to Fraga, Father Thomas Berg and to all of our readers who contributed to “Why We Are Staying,” last year’s feature that explained why, even in the midst of trials, they will never leave the Church.

Our Sunday Visitor also was recognized for its design work, particularly regarding our redesign, which was launched last September. We received second place for honors of best front page, with judges especially liking the “dominant art, strong headlines and good index to copy inside the publication.” The “This Week” section, added with our redesign, received second place for best layout, with “nice segmentation and promotes readability through clear delineation of space.” And the redesign as a whole received honorable mention. Thanks to Lindsey Riesen and Chelsea Alt for their strong design work every day.

It is a great blessing to be able to work alongside professional men and women in Catholic media who have a great love for the Church. This is true nationwide, and it is true at Our Sunday Visitor. And I thank you for reading — because without you, we not only could not do what we do, but would have no reason to.

Gretchen R. Crowe is editorial director for periodicals at OSV. Follow her on Twitter @GretchenOSV.

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