From Friday July 29 to Sunday July 31, I went with The Coming Home Network to the Defending the Faith conference held at Franciscan University in Steubenville Ohio. It was a great weekend. Matt Swaim, the communications coordinator, and I were able to get a few great interviews that we will use over the upcoming months for new CHNetwork videos. I am looking forward to working on them. We were able to interview Mike and Alicia Hernon from the Messy Parenting podcast as well as Father Mike Schmidtz who does great videos with Ascension Presents on YouTube. We were also able to do some great tweeting while we were there and I wanted to share some of those tweets to show how great the weekend was.
I know it has been a while since this website has seen any activity. Here is a quick update on what I have been doing since then and then I’ll share the great opportunity I recently had. in May 2015, I graduated from the Harvard Extension School with a masters degree in digital media. Right after graduation, I went to Atlanta for the Catholic New Media conference put on by SQPN. At the same time, I was talking with JonMarc Grodi about a new position at the Coming Home Network. Many things happened in quick succession, and in September, I started on full time at the Coming Home Network International as their developer of web and new media. This really is a dream job for me. The first project was to get up a new website at http://www.chnetwork.org. After that, it was continuing to improve the website as well as work on new video series for YouTube. We have put out a series of shorts called Signposts and have a couple more in the development stages.
So what does this all mean for nuCatholic Media. Am I abandoning it? The simple answer is no. The Coming Home Network is now my full time job, but I have ideas for projects that I still want to do through nuCatholic Media. The big project will be to complete the interactive documentary on the sacraments that I started for my masters capstone project. You can see what I have done so far at http://www.foodforthejourney.org. I encourage you to visit that site and send me feedback on the progress that has happened so far and share any thoughts or ideas of where it should go in the future. As things start to move again with it I will send an update.
Finally, I wanted to share the great opportunity I just had to be a guest on The Journey Home with Marcus Grodi. For 19 years, Marcus has been interviewing people who have made the journey from many different backgrounds into the Catholic Church. I would be honored if you watched my episode on YouTube. I have already received many encouraging words from people about what I shared, and I hope they can encourage you and your faith as well.
To those who have followed me for a while, thank you all for your encouragement and prayers. For those just joining us on this adventure, thank you for coming along for the ride. My main hope is to be an encouragement to your faith as I strive to show the beauty and love of Christ in His Catholic Church.
Thanks to many friends and family for watching and to JonMarc Grodi for sharing it with the Coming Home Network, the conversion story short video of my wife Michelle has hit 100 views. I know for regular contributors to YouTube, that is a pretty small number, but I am really excited about it. It means that more than just a handful of my friends have watched it.
I have also received many encouraging comments about the video and how it has encouraged people. This is really what my goal is with these videos. I know so many great stories of people who have discovered the beauty and truth in the Catholic Church, and I want to show these stories in a compelling format. I know that for most people to watch them they have to be short and visually stimulating. I don’t want to just show someone talking but tell a story, tell their story in a way that draws people in.
I am looking forward to making more soon. I have my next interview lined up in the next few weeks. If you like Michelle’s video, please share it with your friends, give it a thumbs up on the page, an go to www.youtube.com/nucatholicmedia and subscribe.
For the final project in my Video Field Production course, I created the first of hopefully many short conversion story pieces. The first person in this series was my wife, Michelle Arnold Paine. I had a wonderful day of filming her in her studio. We got some great shots of her mixing paint as well as doing a quick 12 minute beginning of a painting from a blank canvas. We then did an hour long interview talking about her journey into the Catholic Church. Beauty played a large part in her conversion, so the title of this first short is “Michelle Arnold Paine – Pilgrimage of Beauty”. It is now up on YouTube. Please watch it, share it with your friends, and subscribe to the nuCatholic Media YouTube channel.
I am taking a video field production course at the Harvard Extension School. I just finished a group project to write, block, and edit a short film. The only requirement was that the first shot had to be of someone cleaning their glasses. We created a comedy piece in the style of a fake SNL commercial. I hope you enjoy watching it. It was a blast to create. The group I was in collaborated on the writing, blocking, and filming of the piece. I did the editing.
As you may know, the Kickstarter campaign has ended and the goal was not reached. Because of this, no one will be charged for the amount they backed the project with. I wanted to thank you for believing in me and choosing to support this project. It means a lot that you believe in what I am doing. The unsuccessful end of this campaign does not mean the end of the sacraments documentary, just a delay.
Since I am taking classes at the Harvard Extension School, I can borrow equipment from them for limited amounts of time. While I work on procuring the equipment through other means, I will start shooting with their equipment and build up raw footage. While I am doing that, I will be producing short profiles on people’s stories about their journey into the Catholic Church. I will be posting those as I finish them, so keep your eye out. So many have journeyed into the Catholic Church. They have discovered the beauty of the sacraments and it has brought them home. I feel very strongly about sharing the joy and beauty of the Catholic Church, especially the sacraments.
I am also thankful for everything else that has happened over the past month as a result of reaching out through Kickstarter. I have made some great connections, even possible partners with whom to work on this and other projects. I attended an amazing Catholic New Media Conference and met many Catholic bloggers and vloggers. Most importantly, I learned once again to trust in God’s timing and to wait on Him. It is because of Him that we are here, it is because of Him that I am a Catholic, and it is He who needs to bless this project so that it can bless multitudes and draw them to Him.
This is definitely just the beginning and I am glad that I was able to share it with you. To receive updates on my progress, you can follow me on Facebook or Twitter, or visit my website below.
On Saturday I attended the Catholic New Media Conference in Boston. It was so much more than I expected. I was looking forward to a day to learn how Catholics were using new media and social media as part of their ministries. What I received was a calling to share my own faith through the channels that I use every day, from Facebook to Twitter (which I finally started using just a week earlier). On top of the calling, I gained new friendships and a connection to a group of great people that I had just viewed from a distance before. I had looked at people who did Catholic blogging or vlogging as people who were on a level much higher than I was. I was afraid that when I met them that they would look at me as a fanboy. What I found was they invited me in as another Catholic who wanted so share my faith just like the rest of them.
5 priests celebrating mass
The day started of with a mass that was celebrated by 5 of the priests that were attending the conference. The mass itself wasn’t that special, but it hit me that all these people were there to talk about Twitter and Facebook and YouTube… and they were starting off the day by offering it up to God and by meeting Him in the Eucharist. It felt especially solemn and important.
Monsignor Paul Tighe talked about the Vatican and social media
Monsignor Paul Tighe from the Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications gave a great keynote talk about how the Vatican is embracing social media to reach those outside the Church. He stressed that we should be willing to experiment and not be afraid to make mistakes. If not, we will never be out on the “digital continent” spreading the love of Christ. If you have some time, I highly recommend watching/listening to his talk.
Listening, taking notes, and tweeting.
I attended 3 sessions. Two of them were on using social media. The first one was lessons learned from Pope Francis and how he reaches so many people through twitter and the message that he sends. The second was how to reach people who have left the Church and how to show them the love of Christ. The other was on streaming video and vlogging. Father Roderick talked about his experiences with his YouTube channel. He showed us some examples of his “Pixel Priest” where he plays video games. Here is a video where he is playing Sonic the Hedgehog.
Who knew that Father Roderick Vonhögen was on the dark side.
Overall the day was filled with lots of fun and many great conversations. I am glad I made many great connections and look forward to talking and collaborating with many of them in the future.
The past 14 days has been a whirlwind of working and learning. It has been a wonderful experience so far and I am thankful for everything that has happened. After the Kickstarter campaign went live, I jumped into how to spread the word through Facebook and Twitter. I know I should have figured those things out earlier, but that is one of those lessons that is so clear in hind sight.
I have also received confirmation many times in person and online that this documentary can be a great encouragement to many people. Just this past Saturday I had the opportunity to attend the Catholic New Media Conference here in the Boston area. People involved in Catholic blogging, vlogging, tweeting, and other areas of new media were there to teach and learn. I definitely considered myself one of the newbies in the crowd. Everyone that I met there was so encouraging and I learned many good lessons.
As for the Kickstarter campaign, things are moving along nicely.Thank you to everyone who has participated in the campaign by becoming a backer and thank you for all the encouraging words and prayers. There is still a ways to go. At $930, we are almost at 25% of the goal. If you are excited about this project, please spread the word. Forward this email on to whoever might be interested. Visit my Kickstarter campaign and become a part of this project to discover the beauty of the Catholic Church.
Go to Kickstarter Campaign
I have spent the last almost 2 months planning and preparing for the Kickstarter campaign. As I said on the home page, this campaign is to raise money for equipment to make a documentary on the sacraments of the Catholic Church. Please keep this campaign and the documentary in your prayers. I pray that it will bring glory to God and share a deeper appreciation of the Catholic Church and her sacraments.