The Cincinnati Enquirer‘s always reliable Dan Horn reports on the AOC’s alliance with Catholics Come Home and their new $200K advertising campaign:
The Archdiocese of Cincinnati will soon launch one of its most ambitious efforts yet to bring wayward Catholics back into the fold.
The new campaign will use television – a purveyor of secular culture often blamed for distracting the faithful – to reach Catholics who have drifted from the faith.
The church plans to air more than 1,700 TV commercials in Cincinnati, Dayton and Lima from Dec. 14 to Jan. 20, a media blitz that is expected to reach millions of viewers in the 19-county archdiocese. At least eight different ads will run, including those featuring testimonials from Catholics who returned to the faith and others that focus on the church’s history and accomplishments.
Church officials say the goal is to reverse a decades-long trend of declining attendance at Sunday Mass and to increase enthusiasm among those who already attend.
“It reaches people where they are – in front of the television,” said Michael Vanderburgh, director of the archdiocese’s stewardship department. “It reminds them of their heritage as Catholics.”
The commercials, dubbed “evangomercials,” are produced by Catholics Come Home, an Atlanta-based nonprofit dedicated to evangelizing for the faith. The group has produced similar campaigns for 33 dioceses and says they boost Mass attendance by an average of 10 percent.
The archdiocese’s campaign will cost more than $200,000 in ad buys, which already is covered by a special collection parishes took up during Mass earlier this year.
It’s nice to see a local story on the Church that doesn’t include a representative from SNAP sniffing that it’s “too little, too late” or that the money could be better spent on plaintiffs and their attorneys. In the last decade alone, the Archdiocese of Cincinnati lost 90,000 Catholics. To put that figure in perspective, it’s like having the entire Diocese of Covington disappear. Kudos to Archbishop Schnurr for recognizing that after 30+ years of lazy, insular, dissentient Catholicism, a new approach is needed. You can read the AOC’s announcement of their Nov. 28 press conference here.