The biggest news in Catholic news right now is the debut of “EWTN News Nightly.” Thanks to Deacon Greg Kandra’s blog, you can see the Sept. 3 premiere and enjoy intelligent commentary about the telecast. Thanks to Lisa Hendey’s blog, written in advance of the debut, you can feel the kind of excitement that a number of news junkies have been experiencing about this potentially huge step forward in the New Evangelization.
What kind of news junkie would get excited about a show like this? Well, G.K. Chesterton, for one. Yes, he’s been deceased for decades, so we won’t see him blogging about “EWTN News Nightly.” But he was a journalist for whom an interest in the latest news was seamlessly integrated with an interest in the whole world–its past, present, and future–and how everything gained importance, or at least relevance, when looked at through a Catholic lens.
When everything is inherently noteworthy, and lifelong learning is an embrace of Christ the Teacher and the search for Truth, you don’t need state-of-the-art visuals or frenetic theme music or tantalizing story teasers to keep you watching. So “EWTN News Nightly,” which will be presented only weekly at first, has none of those things. It’s mature and well-spoken and a bit reflective–maybe so much so that it could use a bit more urgent dynamism. And anchor Colleen Carroll Campbell is a refreshing presence who radiates professionalism in her clear thinking and good questioning. Her approach toward her on-camera guests is right and rare: They must increase, and I must decrease.
This is just the beginning for this bold EWTN experiment. It will be worth watching future episodes and praying for the success of the project. The New Evangelization needs this kind of regular mass-media testimony that the Catholic faith is relevant to the world, and vice versa. This intelligent, faith-filled anchor and her team will remind people that the news need not be a cheapened commodity or a subjective product of personal, relativist perspective. Journalism, at its best, is a way of journaling about the human journey. This journey helps us keep growing, and this program is likely to keep growing, too.