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Inside NCR

One of the benefits of sitting in my seat is the understanding I have developed that NCR is far more than just another publication. Your phone calls, e-mails and cards and notes confirm that sense, reassure us here that NCR is a gathering spot as much as it is a newsweekly. It is a spot where you can read stories you know you won’t find anywhere else, because we remain an independent source of news. As such, we also have the freedom to continue to print the views and voices that have been marginalized by the institutional church. We believe people cannot be mandated to stop thinking and to stop asking questions.

I think such a spot is especially valuable in the climate of today’s church, where officialdom pulls books off the sales list and the long arm of Rome reaches unnecessarily into the publishing decisions of a first-rate magazine (see stories on Page 3). It is also essential in today’s wider world, where war is a given, civil liberties are increasingly vulnerable and questions a disappearing element of national conversation.

If this is beginning to sound like a sales pitch, it’s because it is. It is something I do with great discomfort (I’m the one who couldn’t sell water to the guy dying of thirst in the middle of the Sahara) but with great conviction. Your support is essential. Widening the circle of those who gather around this little project called NCR is essential to its future.

I’m asking you to consider giving a gift of NCR to someone, a son, daughter, friend, niece, nephew. Let those you love, who might not be familiar with this meeting place, know that they, too, can ask the questions and get in on the discussion.

The Board of Directors of the National Catholic Reporter Publishing Company added four members at a recent meeting held in Kansas City, Mo. They are Annette E. Lomont, Patrick J. Waide Jr., Landon H. Rowland and Fr. Charles E. Curran.

Lomont, a professional fundraiser, is a principal in Raaberg & Lomont, a San Francisco-based fundraising company. She has been active on many nonprofit boards and is currently serving on the board of Catholic Charities of San Francisco.

Waide, a certified public accountant, has had a career in both the for-profit and nonprofit fields. He has held many corporate positions and was involved in the Peter F. Drucker Foundation for Nonprofit Management, serving as its president and CEO in 1999. He sits on a number of boards and is currently an advisor for the Ignatian Residential College in Fairfield University.

Rowland, an attorney by profession, is chairman, president and chief executive officer of Stilwell Financial Inc. His work and interests also cross into the nonprofit sphere. He is chairman of the Kansas City-based Local Investment Commission (LINC) and serves on several other Kansas City-based boards.

Curran, a priest of the diocese of Rochester, N.Y., is the Elizabeth Scurlock University Professor of Human Values at Southern Methodist University. He has served as president of three national professional societies -- the American Theological Society, The Catholic Theological Society of America, and the Society of Christian Ethics. He has authored and edited more than 40 books in the area of moral theology.

-- Tom Roberts

My e-mail address is troberts@natcath.org

National Catholic Reporter, December 13, 2002