Media Release | September 7, 2015
FRANKLY causes quite a buzz as orders reach 10,000
The publishers of a unique new Catholic publication have been overwhelmed with the response from Catholic parishes, schools and agencies with 10,000 copies ordered in the first month.
FRANKLY, published by the Catholic organisation LivingWell Media, is a fresh new magazine-style publication specially designed to engage infrequent Mass attenders and as a counter-balance to secular negativity about the Church.
For publishers Francine and Byron Pirola the buzz of initial feedback and a flood of orders is confirmation that their concept was firmly in line with the needs of people working in evangelisation.
“We’re most excited that as of today this resource which makes Catholic culture and teaching more widely accessible will have a reach of around 40,000 persons as it gets passed around homes and workplaces,” says Byron.
Sample copies were mailed to parishes and other Catholic organisations and agencies around Australia in early August. They offered low-cost bulk orders so copies could be given as gifts, especially to people on the margins of parish life.
“People have been emailing and calling to say they are so grateful we have provided this resource that they believe will really help them in their work of evangelisation,” says Francine.
Catholic media coverage of the 128-page publication has been welcoming, including prominent features on FRANKLY published on the XT3 social network and in The Catholic Weekly newspaper.
Rob Cosgrove, the project officer for Evangelisation Brisbane, called FRANKLY “extraordinary” in a review for The Vine, an e-newsletter.
“Great reading, bite-size, engaging and topical, combined with stunning photography and a modern design to rival anything on the magazine rack of a big city newsagent,” he wrote. He commended it to, “busy parents, young adults, and, really, anyone at all”.
Cathy Kennedy, director of CREDO in Sydney, also expressed thanks for FRANKLY, “As I read it, I kept thinking of all those we meet in our evangelisation work who have lapsed in their practice of faith but are spiritual, mindful and actively engaged in assessing today’s culture and forming values to pass on to their kids,” she wrote.
“This magazine answers many of the kinds of questions they ask and gently introduces the joy and meaning of Catholic faith and life.”
Upon its publication, Bishop Peter Comensoli (Diocese of Broken Bay) commended FRANKLY for answering a need for Catholic publications “that present the freshness of the Gospel and are attendant to its beauty and goodness”.
FRANKLY was created to respond to the call of Pope Francis in Evangelii Gaudium to joyfully proclaim the Gospel.
It includes articles written by Catholic contributors from Australia and overseas that speak to people’s everyday lives about topical issues including the environment, infertility, money, relationships, and hot-button topics from the Synods on the Family.
It features input from Archbishop Anthony Fisher (Sydney), Bishop Eugene Hurley (Darwin), Archbishop Mark Coleridge (Brisbane), Robert Falzon (MenALIVE), entrepreneur Catherine Harris AO and others.
It is offered for bulk sale to parishes, schools, and other Catholic organisations. While it can be ordered at any time, it will work best as a gift to people attending Christmas Masses, with September 18 as the deadline for ordering in time for Christmas delivery.
“The real power of FRANKLY is the physical gifting of the book to Mass-goers especially on Christmas Eve”, notes Francine.
“This is when our churches are full of ‘once-a-year’ visitors like our non-Catholic spouses, family, and friends. It is literally the world’s biggest birthday party and what better way to share our faith than with a gift that people can take home and be enriched by over the coming year”.
FRANKLY can also be used in other ways, such as for parents at the start of the new school year or for families preparing for a child’s sacrament.
Although FRANKLY can be purchased through retail outlets, it is available at cost-recovery prices, enabling Catholic organisations to purchase it cheaply in bulk.
“FRANKLY has a quality look and feel so will hang around people’s homes for a while, be passed onto family and friends and picked up by visitors”, says Francine. “We expect that it will play a part in helping people think differently about the Catholic faith and help them to reconnect with their parish community.”
For more information on FRANKLY contact Marilyn Rodrigues
P: 02 9319 1111