January 12, 2001
volume 12, no. 12
To us today Twelve is a special number!
Michael Cain, editor
The train is running right on schedule as today January 12th, we pass a landmark station that happens only once. We don't want to mix metaphors since The DAILY CATHOLIC is based on the aquatic theme of passage on the Barque of Peter between the Two Pillars of Jesus, present Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Most Holy Eucharist and Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary as relayed by Saint John Bosco in his miraculous vision. So only for today we move from the sea to the rails because it is, afterall, "triple boxcar day!"
What do we mean? Today is January 12th and we are featuring the 12th issue of the year in volume 12: 12/12/12! It's truly a landmark for this ministry which began on the Solemnity of the Assumption in 1990. From our fiat to Jesus and Mary on that day came the first endeavor: 250 xeroxed copies of the first issue of A Call To Peace distributed by hand at our local parish in San Diego in late September that year. From this evolved a quarterly tabloid mailed around the United States to about 5,000 and increased in subsequent years. To be centrally located for distribution we relocated to Bella Vista in the scenic foothills of the Ozarks in Northwest Arkansas. There we published the paper monthly, at one time reaching a circulation of 85,000 throughout the continental US and abroad. Copies were also distributed freely at Marian and Eucharistic Conferences. They were left in church vestibules for parishioners where pastors and their bishop allowed.
In the latter part of 1995 we realized it was time to begin exploring a new medium - the internet. We had heard the horror stories, the big brother stories, but we also heard the whispers of the Holy Spirit gently guiding us in this direction. God was closing doors and opening new vistas hitherto unknown or unfathomed. As costs escalated in mailing and printing, the web began to look more enticing and immediate. We tested the waters in January 1996, securing the URL Catholic-Internet.org, calling it the Catholic Internet Network, a URL we still hold. After endless hours of learning HTML from trial-and-error when HTML looked Greek to me (After all, I mastered Greek in college, why not HTML?), I entered the daunting realm of webmastering. We published the same publication A Call To Peace as an on-line edition, spacing out the articles to every two weeks. As the months went by, we found ourselves publishing more on the net than in print. It was obvious there were more opportunities available from web-publishing as opposed to printing. The start-up costs were staggering, but after that expenses were minimal compared to continuing to print and mail the issues.
Through the grace of the Holy Spirit, we've always been blessed with being ahead of our time in imagineering the future. We could see the possibilities as we envisioned new horizons and took our concept to our Board of Directors. At first they were skeptical. "Publish a daily edition for Catholics?" It had never been done!" "People aren't going to go on the net?" "You can't take a computer into the bathroom for reading." But they also realized what we envisioned was inevitable. I wrote in 1996 that by the turn of the century computers would be available under $800. and that practically every home would have one. This was at a time when computers were in the thousands for a 386 pc and very few had them in their homes. Laptops, notebooks and the like were still in the planning stages. The first year that we were on-line in 1996 90% of our readership was from office computers. But we knew intuitively that it was the wave of the future. Our Lady had conveyed that several times to Cyndi during the time she was receiving messages. Because of that we maintained our vision and the Board approved the daring move.
In effect, we were going on a wing and a prayer without a net to be on the net. After a late summer and early fall of study and preparation we launched The DAILY CATHOLIC on the Solemnity of All Saints 1997. We had published 20 issues on-line and we were, together with the print edition of A Call To Peace, in the volume 8 mode. For that first issue, volume 8, no. 21, we refer you to our Inaugural Issue. You'll note Sister Mary Lucy Astuto wrote in that first issue and continues to write for us. In fact our association with her dates back to 1991 when she began writing in volume 2, no. 2. Today she shares the joy with us as she provides another of her numerous, orthodox and fruitfull columns in volume 12, no. 12.
We published our final print edition of A Call To Peace in December 1997, bidding adiew to that title in favor of the more encompassing DAILY CATHOLIC as the flagship publication for MIR-A-CALL Center, the parent ministry that oversaw A Call To Peace. We had printed just over a million total issues over a seven-year span reaching nearly 50 countries. Little did we realize then how many we would reach on the worldwide web; especially in light of the fact that we had no budget for promoting or advertising the site. In fact, with The DAILY CATHOLIC we trusted totally in God, not spending one dime on promotion or ads. That is truly a sign that it is meant to be, that it is of God, for it has only been through the grace of the Holy Spirit that word has spread so rapidly. You can see the jump in readership in our ShipLogs of passengers sailing on the DAILY CATHOLIC. We are currently nearing 17 million since that bold step on November 1, 1997.
Many have asked periodically why Our Lord chose only twelve Apostles. It must have been a special number to God as well. Just as the Apostles ventured forth with nary a clue except knowing it was right and that God would guide them, we continue to step out in faith each day, not knowing how we'll pay the bills each day. Yet we are not worried for we trust totally in Jesus to provide if we do all He asks of us. And so today, we continue on that daring highwire without a net below because we believe. God said it! We believe it! That settles it!
It hasn't been an easy journey, that's for sure. We've stumbled many times, came close to losing our balance at times, but have never fallen off the path God has set us on. We've been attacked numerous times from all sides. Some call us too left if you can believe it, others say we're too rigid right, others say we're heading straight to hell in a handbasket. We really don't care because we know our destination is right. Because of that, we will continue to wobble at times but move steadily forward and as we do, we are not alone as more and more souls seek to join us on the highwire, giving their fiat to God to do His Will and only His Will no matter the consequences.
That is true faith and you, our loyal readers, have shone faith in us over these past twelve volumes. We rejoice in the number; rejoice in the untold numbers that have returned to the Church. Though today is "triple boxcar day" it hasn't been by the throw of the dice that we are winning souls, but through the will and grace of God. That, in itself, is reason enough to rejoice. And since we are rejoicing, pardon us if we party just for today over 12/12/12. After all, to us today, twelve is a special number!
For past editorials, see CATHOLIC PewPOINT Archives
January 12, 2001
volume 12, no. 12
CATHOLIC PewPOINT commentary
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