That’s something that I often wonder: what am I doing as the editor of a tri-diocesan newspaper? I’m especially thinking about it right now because (as I write this) I have just attended, through the magic of Zoom, the annual conference for the Anglican Editors Association. Like the song “This Land is Your Land,” the Anglican Church of Canada was represented from coast to coast. As always, we had workshops and also time to learn about what other dioceses were doing, and how our fellow editors are doing in the middle of the crazy pandemic world that we are living in. I have always found great support in this group, and we always learn a lot from each other. God willing, we will be able to meet in person soon, because that’s where the real fellowship happens with shared meals, and fun outings.
Different Anglican publications have different ways to cover news in their parts of the country. Some editors are professional journalists, and they travel a lot, covering stories for the publication, in the style of a more secular newspaper. That’s not entirely possible for me—this paper covers three dioceses and a huge geographical area. I do what I can, but it’s not practical to fly me all over the place to every anniversary, celebration of new ministry, or ordination. Thankfully, I do have many trusted contributors. When I get stories from across Newfoundland and Labrador, it’s like I do get to travel around and experience your church stories, and so do the readers of the paper. It’s a connecting web for us all.
So I take all of those stories, and I put them together into a newspaper, and then that goes and gets printed and sent out. I also upload the paper to the Anglican Life website, and share more photos and stories that don’t make it into the paper. Some people might think that the website is more important than the print paper is, but I think that they are just different ways of getting things out to readers. As time goes by, we may see an increase in the online readership, but I don’t think that print is going anywhere right now. Many people predicted the end of print books when e-books were introduced, but Chapters is still full of books. In much the same way, Anglican Life, and its cross-country counterparts, will be around for a while yet. More than 3,300 families have a subscription to Anglican Life, and since those subscriptions have had to recently be confirmed, it means that those are papers that are wanted, and that are getting read.
While there are other things that I do, like maintain the Facebook page for Anglican Life and create original content for it, I still see this paper as my main occupation. I try to publish as much news from the three dioceses as I can, and I hope that you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy making it.