The Editor: I will never be able to adequately express the importance in my life that the Prairie Messenger has been. It regularly arrived in my home in Bruno while I was growing up. I received a gift subscription in 1966 at the time of our marriage, and have continued the subscription ever since. The paper followed us around Ontario as we moved and finally settled in with us here in Brockville.
My view of the Messenger has changed over the years. At first I saw it as a connection with my Prairie past and with the good priests and sisters who were so influential in my early life. Throughout my adult years I came to realize it as a valuable resource in my own increased understanding of Catholicism and in the development of my faith.
The excellent writers who have contributed to the Messenger over the years have been intelligent, not always middle of the road, but always thought-provoking. I have appreciated being presented with articles that acknowledged conflict in our faith, because it let me know that it was OK for me to consider issues and realize that there are many shades of an argument.
Yes, doctrine is solid, but approaches and understandings can vary and must always be based in love, for God and for each other. A friend who is a priest and is also a subscriber frequently used material from the Messenger for his homilies.
When I read the news that the Messenger will cease to exist next May, I felt profound sadness, already. Each and every issue that I will receive for the next year will be read, pondered, shared and deeply appreciated.
A sincere "thank you" to every person who has contributed to the life of the Prairie Messenger, from the first Benedictines who long ago established the paper, to all the excellent writers, editors and technical support people who through the years followed the vision and brought a quality resource to us. May God richly bless each and every one of you. — Joanne Story, Brockville, Ont.
The Editor: I am sorry to hear that the Prairie Messenger will cease publishing next year. It has been an important part of my spiritual life. I usually read it from cover to cover. It keeps me abreast of what is happening in the Catholic world locally, provincially, nationally and internationally.
Every Sunday morning I read the Liturgy and Life column. These reflections by your excellent columnists on the scriptures, that I will soon hear at mass, are very helpful in better understanding the readings.
Your other columnists from Rev. Ron Rolheiser to Leah Perreault to Cedric Speyer, to name a few, are insightful and inspirational.
I think you have probably wrestled with this decision long and hard and come to the conclusion you have. If there was any way to save the PM, I would certainly be willing to participate in such an endeavour. If not, I would just like to say thank you for the many years of spiritual formation that I have received from this excellent publication — Ken Roberts, Saskatoon
Dear Editor: I have been giving the eucharist to cancer patients at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto for 15 years. Eight of those years were with a Jesuit priest, Rev. Allan Peterkin, who advised me to subscribe to the Prairie Messenger.
It has been my “go to” newspaper for what has been happening in our Christian churches ever since. I do not know what I will do without it. It has been my source of wisdom and joy.
I am going to make a suggestion that I hope might contribute to a different decision than to end the publication of this newspaper. I myself am willing to pay $75 per year for a subscription and I wonder how many others would be willing. I would bet a lot!
Please let me know if you would consider raising the rates for private individuals like myself to keep this paper going. I take courses at Regis Jesuit College here. Perhaps I could advertise it there. Hoping for the best. — Carolyn (Lynn) Smart, Toronto