Our mission is to invite people into a relationship with Jesus Christ and His Church. We seek to echo the Catholic faith in the six counties of the Diocese of Youngstown. We amplify the voice, plans and priorities of the diocese by utilizing multimedia and a wide range of communication strategies. We proclaim the Gospel, build up the Body of Christ, practice authentic dialogue and support the work of the Church, in a spirit of truth, transparency and consistency.
Formed in 2022 in response to Bishop David J. Bonnar’s pastoral letter, “Testify to the Light,” the Diocese of Youngstown’s Communication Department consists of a team of professionals — many of whom have lay ministry backgrounds — who specialize in strategic communications, multimedia production and publishing. The diocese’s primary product, The Catholic Echo, is a multi-platform publication and media group that brings together all of the Diocese of Youngstown’s media assets, including its print publication and the Catholic Telecommunications Network of Youngstown (CTNY).
But long before The Catholic Echo, the Diocese of Youngstown had already been established as a thought-leader in diocesan communications.
Just one year after the diocese was founded in 1943, The Catholic Exponent newspaper published its first issue, providing “a Catholic Window on the World” and offering news, features and commentary at the local, national and international levels to Catholics in all six counties of the diocese. The Exponent team produced it, without interruption, until its final issue on February 24, 2023, when it was then re-imagined as The Catholic Echo magazine. Premiering in 2023, the Catholic Echo magazine succeeds and builds upon the 79-year-history of The Catholic Exponent newspaper and is delivered free-of-charge to all 52,000 parishioner households in the Diocese of Youngstown.
The diocese was also forward-thinking in its early use of multimedia communications. As early as 1954, the diocese was broadcasting Sunday Mass on radio with the help of a local AM station. Later, in the early 1960s, the first televised Mass was broadcast on in partnership with local stations. The award-winning “Our Sunday Mass” continues to be produced and broadcast on WFMJ-TV 21, (the local NBC Affiliate).
The Diocese of Youngstown established the Catholic Telecommunications Network of Youngstown (CTNY) in 1980, to expand the production and delivery of its radio and TV programs, including the Gabriel- and Proclaim Award-winning “Wineskins” radio program, which is now available on all major podcasting platforms, in addition to local radio stations. The diocese also made St. Columba Cathedral camera-ready in the 1980s, so that it could provide live and taped broadcasts of liturgical events.
Today, with The Catholic Echo, the Communications Department strives to honor The Diocese of Youngstown’s legacy of innovation in the communications field, so that we might continue to educate, inform and entertain Catholics in our six-county diocese by forging stronger connections to our parish communities and highlighting the many blessings of Catholic life in our region.