The Central Minnesota Catholic magazine and Office of Communications and Development received eight awards from the Catholic Media Association for work published in 2021. The awards were announced July 7 at the 2022 Catholic Media Conference held in Portland, Oregon. The gathering featured workshops, keynote speakers and an awards ceremony.
• First place – Writer of the Year – Kristi Anderson, former associate editor, The Central Minnesota Catholic
The judges wrote: “‘If you walk into a church you should feel accepted.’ These are the words of the pastor whose parishioners include Nick, who suffered a brain injury that left him in a wheelchair and mostly nonverbal. But it could be broadened to include other examples of people not only dealing with tragedies but using the experiences to help them and others become more Christ-like in these marvelously insightful and inspiring stories by Kristi Anderson. We read of a couple who campaign for more understanding of mental health issues after their son’s suicide, a super foster family, a mother who completes a memory quilt in honor of her dead daughter and a wife who pushes on after her husband’s death. The stories remind us of suffering, but more important, of how people use their personal tragedies to offer insights into life for them and for others and how those ‘others’ step up to help.”
• First place – Best Seasonal Issue or Section for the magazine’s February 2021 Lent section
“Fun, inventive, resourceful and useful issue. Presentation is solid, with writing and art,” the judges commented.
• Second place – Best Diocesan Fundraising Appeal Produced by a Communications Department Staff for the Bishop’s Annual Appeal designed by Barb Simon-Johnson, marketing manager
“The graphics and colors are great,” the judges noted. “The design really pulls you in. The abstract art theme is very colorful and eye-catching. It really carries the layout. It is tough to use white text effectively, but they do a nice job. Good synopsis of the diocese’s ministries. Adding a special prayer was a nice touch.”
• Third place – Best Website for a Magazine or Newsletter: TheCentralMinnesotaCatholic.org
• Third place – Best Electronic Newsletter for The Central Minnesota Catholic’s Monday Morning Update by Barb Simon-Johnson and Joe Towalski, editor
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• Third place – Best Interview for “Good Samaritans: Ron and Jane Brown: St. Cloud couple opens door, hearts to more than 100 babies in 43 years of foster parenting” – story by Kristi Anderson and photos by Dianne Towalski
• Third place – Best Reporting of Social Justice Issues: Solidarity for “Keeping their stories alive: Four local Benedictine sisters provide humanitarian support at the U.S.-Mexico border” by Kristi Anderson
• Honorable mention – Best Reporting of the Celebration of a Sacrament for “Like Daughter, Like Mother: Inspired by her daughter’s pursuit of faith, St. Joseph woman prepares to enter the Catholic Church this spring” – story by Kristi Anderson and photos by Dianne Towalski