CatholicTV recognized for excellence

BRAINTREE -- In just over a half-century, CatholicTV has become more than just a local Catholic television station. Now, the television network can reach a nationwide audience with not just television programming, but its embrace of other multimedia as well.

“We’re on the cutting edge of a lot of things,” said Jay Fadden, general manager of the Watertown-based station.

Recognized for these recent contributions to Catholic evangelism evangelization and overall programming excellence, CatholicTV has been awarded a Gabriel Award for Religious Television Station of the Year by the Catholic Academy for Communications Arts Professionals.

The Gabriel Awards have been given by the Catholic communications organization for over 40 years. This year’s awards include prominent secular and Catholic media outlets including NBC Nightly News’ “Making a Difference” Series, and “Interrupted Lives: Catholic Sisters Under European Communism” by NewGroup Media.

“It is a tremendous honor for us to be given this prestigious Gabriel Award, not for a specific program, but rather for our entire network,” said Father Robert Reed, the director of CatholicTV. “I hold in deep esteem our team members and on-air personalities as well as the entire CatholicTV family of viewers who have sustained the network for some 56 years. This Gabriel Award is a tribute to their dedication and commitment to America’s Catholic Television Network.”

Fadden agreed with Father Reed.

“This impressive award not only reflects the professional and hard work of our entire staff and the leadership of Cardinal Seán O’Malley, but is recognition of the faith of the many loyal viewers who have supported CatholicTV for over 55 years.”

Fadden also said the award reflects the growth of the network over the years, the quality of its programming, and its use of “cutting edge technology.”

Recent network developments have included a CatholicTV Jr. widget, the availability of ten programs in 3D on the station’s website, the station’s “state of the art” website itself, the launching of an iPhone app, and Facebook and Twitter accounts.

CatholicTV has a diverse scope of programming which attracts viewers of all ages, according to Fadden. The station has Catholic versions of a morning talk and cooking shows, and broadcasts reruns of Archbishop Fulton Sheen’s hit show “Life is Worth Living.”

The station also covers Sunday Mass from the University of Notre Dame and Vatican events.

Locally, the station runs a show featuring Cardinal O’Malley and a movie review program with Fathers Bill Kelly and Chip Hines, priests of the Archdiocese of Boston.

CatholicTV recently signed an affiliation agreement with Comcast. Under that agreement, CatholicTV can request their programming be shown in those regions of the country reached by Comcast.