ROCKVILLE CENTER, NY – The Diocese of Rockville Center has shut down the publication of Long Island Catholic Magazine and Fe Fuerza Vida, its Spanish-language newspaper.
Sean Dolan, associate editor and director of communications for the diocese, announced the changes in an August 27 press release, saying they are taking place immediately.
He told the Catholic News Service on August 31 that the decision to shut down the publications marked “a sad day” for the diocese.
The move resulted in the loss of 2.5 positions in the diocese, including that of advertising representative for the magazine and editor-in-chief of the newspaper, Dolan said.
“We subsidized both the newspaper and the magazine for a while,” Dolan explained. “We were one of the few publications that had to generate ad revenue and subscription revenue to justify this existence.”
The diocese has also been “on the test” financially since it filed in October 2020 a petition for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the US Bankruptcy Code, as it has faced more than 200 lawsuits alleging sexual abuse filed since. that New York State has lifted the statute of limitations for such cases.
Bishop John O. Barres of Rockville Center said when filing the case that the action offered the only way “to ensure a fair and equitable outcome for all involved, including survivors of abuse whose compensation settlements will be resolved by the courts ”.
In 2019, former Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the Child Victims Act to lift the statute of limitations for filing child sexual abuse cases that were previously ‘time barred or expired’.
The new law gave survivors one year to file their cases, but Cuomo has twice extended the deadline due to challenges posed by the ongoing pandemic. The deadline has passed August 14.
The Long Island Catholic began appearing as a weekly in 1962. After 50 years, it became a subscription magazine published 10 times a year in 2012. The new format aimed to save the diocese hundreds of thousands of dollars in annual grant. , Dolan said at the time.
The magazine had 9,000 paid subscribers and was facing a decline in readership, Dolan said. The diocese distributed 10,000 copies of the newspaper to 54 parishes that had mass in Spanish until the coronavirus pandemic struck. The journal then moved to an online version.
Dolan said the closures prompted diocesan leaders to seek new ways to reach Catholics in the diocese – both those who remain engaged in the church as well as those who have ceased to regularly attend mass.
The diocese will also continue to share news through its website at www.drvc.org, social media channels and the Catholic Faith Network TV channel.