Vocations campaign wins national award

“Imagine Being a Priest,” the Diocese of Charleston vocations campaign, won a 2002 Proclaim Awards from the U.S. bishops’ Catholic Communication Campaign.

The awards, honoring excellence in diocesan communications, were presented in mid-October in Los Angeles during the assembly of the Catholic Academy for Communication Arts Professionals, formerly known as Unda-USA.

This is the 21st year that the honors have been given to dioceses.

The campaign was the vision of Bishop David B. Thompson and was made possible through the generosity of Beth and Larry R. Burtschy of Charleston.

“I think it’s a first-rate production,” said Bishop Thompson, who noted other dioceses have employed the logo. “It can be used universally. The faith and generosity of the Burtschy family will further their dream of promoting vocations.”

Father Dennis Willey, director of vocations for the diocese, said the campaign has proven effective. The video, poster, postcards, key chains and other materials are taken to college career days and used in high schools, elementary schools, parishes and on vocational retreats.

“I am delighted the campaign is having some beneficial effect,” Mr. Burtschy said.”We have felt the lack of vocations enormously. South Carolina is suffering badly from the lack of vocations, and we need priests.”

Father Bob Sayer and Deacon Joe Cahill worked with Gil Shuler Design to make the campaign a reality. It was released last year.

Other winners of 2002 Proclaim Awards and certificates of merit were:

— Regular TV Masses category: “Table of the Lord,” Diocese of Albany, N.Y. Merit winner was “Cathedral Sunday Mass,” Diocese of Corpus Christi, Texas.

— Radio programs: “Accent on the Air,” Diocese of Greensburg, Pa.

— Radio Public Service Announcements: “Ask the Padre,” Diocese of Corpus Christi. Merit winner was “You See Us in Our Sunday Best,” Diocese of Marquette, Mich.

— Print category for brochures, posters and other materials: Media guide, St. Louis Archdiocese.

— Video presentations: “Great Expectations,” Diocese of Harrisburg, Pa. Merit winner was “Young Adults in Grief,” Los Angeles Archdiocese.

— Computer/Internet: Web site of St. Louis Archdiocese, www.archstl.org.