Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of January 12, 2004
After 70 years, Nfld. Catholic paper closes
By ART BABYCH
Canadian Catholic News
The Catholic newspaper in Canada's oldest city has closed its doors after a series of deficits in recent years.
The Monitor, the monthly newspaper of the Archdiocese of St. John's, Nfld., was first published in February 1934.
Archbishop Brendan O'Brien announced the closure of the newspaper in a letter to subscribers. It was "a very difficult decision to make but a necessary one given the financial situation of the archdiocese," he said.
"These are difficult economic times for all newspapers - circulation is down - advertising revenue has decreased," he said. For The Monitor, both factors translated into an annual deficit of about $25,000 for each of the past number of years.
"The Archdiocese of St. John's can no longer continue to fund this deficit," he said.
O'Brien, also the president of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, said the diocesan administration had recommended that the newspaper discontinue publishing and he agreed. "With the publication of this issue The Monitor will cease operation as a regular monthly newspaper," he said.
However, the archbishop added that in the future, special commemorative issues would be published under The Monitor banner marking special anniversaries in the local Church including the 150th anniversary of the Basilica Cathedral in 2005.
O'Brien said The Monitor has always had "a steadfast core of readers" who have been life-long subscribers. "It is you who will miss The Monitor the most," he said. "We will be contacting each of you individually by letter to suggest alternative Catholic publications and to resolve any questions you may have about subscriptions which already have been paid."
The archbishop also thanked all who contributed to The Monitor over the years, in particular editor Larry Dohey.
The Archdiocese of St. John's serves a Catholic population of 118,985 in 40 parishes.