A few days ago at a Robin’s Donuts in Thunder Bay, I met with Stewart Rathje and Gilles Daigle. We gathered to discuss the “resurrection” of the Saint Gabriel’s website. About two years ago, they, along with Gille’s daughter, Danielle, had enthusiastically designed and launched the site. They had visited me to show off their site when I was still Director of Communications for the Catholic Diocese of Thunder Bay. I had voiced support for Saint Gabriel’s because there was much good about it. However, privately, I felt that the site attempted to be all things to all Catholics and seemed to lack focus.
It’s not that they lacked talent. Stewart is a very capable web designer and Gilles is a gifted graphic artist. The three of them were definitely motivated by their faith. However, the site, as I said, lacked a clear focus, though it was very good in other ways. As a result, they seem to loose interest in the site and the project became dormant.
Now, we wanted to resurrect it. What motivated us? Why on earth, some might ask, would anyone want to create another Catholic website? Well, I believe the four of us have the talent and faith to create a good Catholic website, but, more importantly, we feel inspired to do so. As conservative Catholics, we strongly disagree with left-leaning pseudo-Catholic websites which focus on “reforming” the Church out of existence. We also strongly disagree with so called “ultra-conservative” Catholic websites that damn the whole current Church hierarchy. The official Church sites are often very good but, in their attempt to “not offend” and avoid controversy, they tend to lack impact don’t seem to generate passion among the people. We do admire the many good, conservative Catholic websites which respect the authority of the Church hierarchy but tend to be bolder and more militant.
We want the “new” Saint Gabriel’s to be among this last type. Here, we will call a “spade a spade” and we will submit to the teaching authority of the Holy Church. We believe that Vatican II did not attempt to fundamentally change the historical teachings of the Church. It was rather an attempt to “update” that teaching in order to provide a “flexible” Catholic response to a radically changed world which had become secular, “tolerant,” pluralistic, democratic, humanistic and socialistic. The danger, of course, is that by implementing the Vatican II “strategy” through respectful “dialogue” with the world, the Church would gradually adopt the anti-God spirit of the age.
Other than agreeing on this general purpose for the site, we didn’t hammer out all the details. At this point, we decided that each of us would have the freedom to include what we wanted in our own sections on the site. We would also allow like-minded Catholics to contribute articles on timely subjects and we would include links to articles of interest on other sites. Danielle plans to provide resources for Catholic parents who wish to home school their children. We welcome articles from you. We don’t guarantee that we will post them on our site, but we do promise to have a look at them. Please email them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org“>email@example.com. Also, we want to hear from you. Tell us what you like or don’t like about the site and let us know what we can do to make it even better. God bless!