Changing with the Times 


In many respects all eyes are on us. The news we generate in the Archdiocese of New York, with Cardinal Dolan as our spokesperson and leader, typically travels further than we can gauge. The Cardinal’s presence and following is huge. On Facebook alone he has 410,000 followers. In addition, we are in the media capital of the United States, so the audiences are larger when we do broadcast our messages. A Sunday Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral is a sought-after experience for anyone visiting New York, and thousands watch remotely. 

And yet there is opportunity for us to reach more people, to share the good news of the Gospel with more audiences. That’s why we made the decision to open a new newsroom. Our plan is to build upon our strengths to do even more in terms of evangelization.

I started at the Archdiocese before the pandemic, when most organizations already relied on digital channels to reach their key audiences. In the last two and a half years we have seen an accelerated use of these online communications channels. Websites need to operate quickly with high volumes of readers and viewers. Social media needs to reflect what is going on in real-time. Video continues to gain engagement instead of printed articles. Email and text communications have also increased in different industries. And organizations have to organize and publicize their communications in a seamless manner to quickly reach as many people as possible.  

We follow the trends at media entities because—at the Archdiocese—we rely on news organizations to help us get our message out to the broader community. Unfortunately, we also had to examine our own news operation to be sure it was operating efficiently in the modern era. While change is difficult, it is needed at times to continue to fulfill the mission of the Archdiocese. I hope you will join me in thanking the Catholic New York team that built a strong communications foundation for the Archdiocese. The work they have done is remarkable.

I hope you will also join me in supporting the new digital newsroom we are developing that will be well suited for the environment we are in today in terms of quick publishing, video storytelling and daily engagement for all audiences. We are building it to ensure our resources and our infrastructure work well in today’s modern world of digital communications. Like many new initiatives, it will start small and will grow. We hope you will enjoy the stories from day one and into the future.

John Cahill is the chancellor of the archdiocese.