From left, Catholic Press Awards 2018 winning entries: Best Layout of Article or Column (second place), Best Reporting on Vocations to Priesthood, Religious Life or Diaconate (first place) and Best Multiple Picture Package: News Package (third place).

From left, Catholic Press Awards 2018 winning entries: Best Layout of Article or Column (second place), Best Reporting on Vocations to Priesthood, Religious Life or Diaconate (first place) and Best Multiple Picture Package: News Package (third place).

From staff reports

The Monitor, newspaper of the Diocese of Trenton, was honored with five awards and an honorable mention during the Catholic Press Association’s annual three-day Catholic Media Conference, including a first- and third-place award for Best Reporting on Vocations and third-place recognition for Newspaper of the Year.

The awards were presented June 15 during the annual conference, held this year in Green Bay, Wis. The judge’s panel consists of media and academic professionals.

“Recognition from our peers and colleagues in the Catholic press is always very gratifying, and we deeply appreciate the honor that comes with each Catholic Press Association award,” said Rayanne Bennett, associate publisher of The Monitor. “On behalf of our publisher, Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M., I want to commend our hard-working and talented team who together produce a publication of which we all can be proud.”

Bennett added that The Monitor staff felt especially blessed this year to have earned two of three available awards in the Best Reporting on Vocations category.

“To be affirmed for our work on such a central issue for the Church is both encouraging and humbling and serves to inspire our ongoing efforts,” she said.

Open to hundreds of Catholic media outlets including newspapers, journals, books, multimedia and wire services across the United States and Canada, the awards recognized the work of The Monitor staff and its freelance partners.

“We want to congratulate all of the Catholic press award winners, and express our great respect and admiration for the exceptional Catholic newspapers with whom we compete in our circulation class,” Bennett said.

Catholic Press Awards 2018 Winning Entries

• BEST REPORTING ON VOCATIONS TO PRIESTHOOD, RELIGIOUS LIFE OR DIACONATE (Non-Weekly Diocesan Newspaper, Circulation 25,000 or less)

First Place: “Vocations,” by Monitor Staff and Freelance Partners

Judges’ Feedback: “Many sections devoted to vocations are long on biographies and statistics and short on interest. Not in this wonderfully organized and written effort. The role of family and local church leaders in guiding members to consider church vocations is stressed. Plus the peace that comes upon accepting a call. But we also get personal stories of how all of this works to improve lives. And a reminder that we must magnify callings to the point of being a true saint. Very nicely organized, presented, written and thought out.

Third Place: “Momentous Journey: Diocese welcomes new shepherds as Bishop O’Connell ordains four men to priesthood,” by Jennifer Mauro

Judges’ Feedback: “This well written article begins with a deacon nervously awaiting ordination to a priest and ends with that same person reflecting on his new life. In between are the rites and words that make it all possible. A very well-crafted peek into the tension and joy of entering a new vocation.”

• BEST LAYOUT OF ARTICLE OR COLUMN (Non-Weekly Diocesan Newspaper, Circulation 25,000 or less)

Second Place: “Well-Being At Risk: Concern for youth triggers pushback against popular Netflix series depicting suicide,” by Clara Baumann

Judges’ Feedback: “Nice use of a single color lines/arrows to separate and draw attention to special information.”

• BEST MULTIPLE PICTURE PACKAGE: News Package

Third Place: “Light of the Church: Our Lady of Guadalupe pilgrimage, Mass draw 1,000 from across Diocese to Trenton’s Cathedral,” by Clara Baumann, Craig Pittelli, Armando Machado

Judges’ Feedback: “Great color and overall strong images of the event. Removing a few of the smaller photos in order to play some of the stronger images larger would of given the package more impact.”

NEWSPAPER OF THE YEAR (Non-Weekly Diocesan Newspaper, Circulation 25,000 or less)

Third Place: “Models of Faith”; “We Are a Pilgrim People”; “Prepare the Way for the Lord,” by Monitor Staff and Freelance Partners

“The Monitor was impressive from top to bottom. The story variety, the special sections, the reporting and the visual design of the paper was excellent. This paper deserves to be a top contender.”

BEST SUPPLEMENT OR SPECIAL ISSUE: Best Regular Special Supplement

Honorable Mention:  “Ablaze: DYC 2017,” by Monitor Staff and Freelance Partners