On Thursday, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' communications office released a statement detailing changes that the department will soon undergo. The reorganization efforts include two new offices, additional staff to oversee Spanish language translations and the use of Web 2.0.
“These changes will allow us to tap the benefits of the rapidly changing media environment around us,” said Helen Osman, secretary of the Communications Department, who announced the new plan on March 16.
The reorganization effort will be effective May 1 and will first create two new offices: the Office of Creative Services and the Office of Customer and Client Relations. A unit for project management in the Office of the Secretary for Communications will also be added.
“The new creative services office,” said Osman, “will produce material to be available in print and digital forms – video, audio, text, Web, mobile devices and other emerging technology.”
Other significant changes, noted Osman, include the addition of new staff members who will oversee Spanish language translations as well as the use of Web 2.0 within the Office of Media Relations.
“We are in a paradigm shift in how people receive information, as profound as when the printing press was invented,” the secretary underscored. “It is important that the Church not only provide its wisdom regarding the primary dignity of the human person in this information evolution, but also take advantage of the opportunities this new media ecology provides.”
Thursday's press release also detailed the five priority initiatives that the U.S. bishops have set for the USCCB, which include the promotion of marriage, faith formation with an emphasis on sacramental practice, promotion of vocations to the priesthood and religious life, life and dignity of the human person, and cultural diversity, with a particular emphasis on Hispanic populations.