Salt and Light media foundation to celebrate 10th anniversary

Fr Thomas Rosica SALT  LIGHT Television logo CNA US Catholic News 11 29 12 Father Thomas Rosica, CEO of the Salt and Light Media Foundation.

Canada's Salt and Light Catholic Media Foundation and Salt + Light Television, Canada's first Catholic television network, will begin celebrations of its 10th anniversary in December.

"It is hard to believe that we began this bold media initiative ten years ago!" Basilian Father Thomas Rosica, the CEO of the Salt and Light Catholic Media Foundation, said Nov. 29.

Fr. Rosica recalled how the network was "born on the wings of World Youth Day 2002" and continued its "tremendous dynamism and energy."

Now that the foundation is celebrating its anniversary, Fr. Rosica believes it is a time for renewal.

"This is a time to repeat our 'yes' to the Lord as we continue working with him in producing works of art, beauty, faith, hope and joy for the world," he said. "Salt and Light is a powerful instrument of and witness to the new evangelization!"

Salt + Light Television reaches 2.6 million homes in Canada and millions more through the internet. It covers major Catholic Church events locally and globally, including the plenary meeting of the Canadian bishops' conference, papal audiences, World Youth Day, the International Eucharistic Congress and the annual Supreme Convention of the Knights of Columbus.

Archbishop Richard Smith of Edmonton, president of the Canadian bishops' conference, wished the foundation a happy anniversary "and many more anniversaries to come."

"Your message remains one of hope and witness, showing readers and viewers, as well as other media, how the teachings of the Church and its witness are themselves 'alive and young,'" he said in a Nov. 23 letter to Fr. Rosica.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York City, president of the U.S. bishops' conference, sent his own congratulations and praised the network's cooperation with SiriusXM radio's The Catholic Channel.

His letter, dated Dec. 1, voiced hope that the Catholic Church in the U.S. will "welcome Salt and Light with open arms" as it expands its reach.

The foundation also received congratulations from Cardinal Claudio Maria Celli, the head of the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Social Communications.

"I am grateful for all that you and your collaborators have done over the years in producing and promoting inspirational Catholic programming," Cardinal Celli said.

"This work," he added, "is an important contribution to the new evangelization."

He also praised Salt and Light for involving Canadian and other young people in their efforts to spread the Gospel through social and traditional media.

Canadian entrepreneur Gaetano Gagliano at the age of 86 founded the Salt and Light Media Foundation and its television network soon after World Youth Day was held in Toronto 2002. Fr. Rosica had been national director of the World Youth Day event and became the founding CEO of the Catholic Salt and Light Media Foundation in 2003 after encouragement from Gagliano and Pope John Paul II.

"Our network is really a living tribute to Pope John Paul II!" Fr. Rosica said. "How happy Blessed John Paul II must be as he continues to watch over Salt and Light 'from the window' of the Father's House!"

Salt and Light's 10th anniversary celebrations will begin with a Dec. 6 Christmas concert in Toronto featuring The Priests, the Irish trio of singing clergy. The "Venite Adoremus 2012" concert performers include the Amabile Youth Singers of London, Ontario and the Toronto-based singer Rosanna Riverso. Proceeds will benefit the Salt and Light foundation.

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The Salt and Light foundation produces the online radio station S+L Radio 1, which provides Catholic music, devotionals, and inspirational messages. Deacon Pedro Guevara Mann hosts its weekly radio program Salt + Light Hour, providing commentary, interviews and music. The show is available on The Catholic Channel on SiriusXM 129.

The foundation also produces a magazine with a circulation of over 90,000 and a smart phone app available for iPhones and iPads.

Salt and Light provides content in French and Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese. It will soon add Spanish-language content.

Over 25 people now work for Salt and Light and its foundation is supported by over 2,200 donors.

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