‘Shortsighted’ Decision


I agree with the author of the letter "Bad Timing" in your June 30 issue and, like her, I am very disappointed by the decision to close Catholic New York. Switching to a digital-only platform is very shortsighted, both as a business decision and, even more problematic, as a strategy for evangelization.

It is true that there are a substantial number of New Yorkers for whom the digital divide is very real. I run a nonprofit in the South Bronx which operated in person through most of the pandemic. We had to; a very large portion of our client base just could not connect with us remotely, many did not even have email. A digital service will just not reach those folks. But a digital-only platform will also fail to connect with quite a lot of us in the pews. I read Catholic New York pretty regularly; although I am very digitally adept, I read the paper. I pick it up at the back of the Church when I go to Mass, along with the parish bulletin. I also contribute in the monthly collection to support it. Catholic New York is how I stay up to date on local and national Catholic news—especially the local news. I'm pretty sure I won't be taking an extra step to connect online when it is gone, since I'm not doing so now. You may be able to recapture the lost readership over time, but why lose us at all? My understanding is the paper has decent circulation; but, even if it didn't, it just seems foolish to discard what is such an effective vehicle for evangelization. I hope the archdiocesan leadership rethinks this decision.

Irene Baldwin