National Catholic Register Celebrates 90th Anniversary, Pope Anniversary Edition

On the papal plane to Yangon, Register Rome correspondent, Edward Pentin presented the Holy Father with a copy of the Register’s 90th anniversary special edition.  Said Pentin, “The Holy Father smiled and looked genuinely interested to receive it, expressed his thanks and then handed the paper to Vatican spokesman Greg Burke for safekeeping”.

The National Catholic Register is turning 90 this year, an  anniversary its editor-in-chief sees as a blessing, and an opportunity to move forward in service to the Church.   “The Register’s mission from its earliest days has been to inform and form our readers so that Catholics, through knowledge of the truth of Christ and his Church, might be inspired by faith and equipped to engage the culture around them,” said Jeanette DeMelo, editor-in-chief of the National Catholic Register.

One of the top online and print Catholic newspapers in the United States, the National Catholic Register was founded in 1927 by Msgr. Matthew Smith of the Archdiocese of Denver, with the mission of providing news through the lens of the Magisterium.  The paper was an outgrowth of the Archdiocese of Denver’s Register, which grew into the Register System of Newspapers, producing 35 diocesan editions, with a national and diocesan circulation which at its height reached 850,000 households.

The National Catholic Register’s first national issue was printed on Nov. 8, 1927.  “If you like a Catholic paper with snap, vigor, courage, here it is. If you like one that is easy to read, here it is. If you like one that will always be loyal to the Church and has no selfish axe to grind, here it is,” wrote Msgr. Smith in one of the paper’s first issues.  Decades after Msgr. Smith’s comments, DeMelo hopes their founder’s words still stand true.  “I hope that in our pages (both in print and online), Register readers find that at 90, we still have ‘snap, vigor and courage,’ as we take a ‘definite stand on stirring questions’ of the day,” DeMelo said.

In 2011, EWTN Global Catholic Network acquired the National Catholic Register. In 2012, DeMelo was appointed the Register’s editor-in-chief.