2013 will be remembered as a good year for two of the Focolare’s English publications. New City (Philippine Edition) was awarded a special mention for Interreligious Dialogue by Christian Media (ICOM), which has its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. The North American Living City magazine received an honorary mention in the category “Best Coverage of Vocations to Priesthood, Religious Life or Diaconate” for an article written by Sarah Mundell. The award was conferred by the Catholic Press Association of Canada and North America (CPA).
From vocations of the Catholic Church to the great frontier of inter-religious dialogue. An article in Living City and two in New City were particularly appreciated. The article in the American magazine was written by Sarah Mundell, following her interview with David Rider, the protagonist of the story, entitled: “Man of the cloth . . . and tap shoes” (LC June 2012). During the award ceremony the CPA described the article as “expressively written, fascinatingly original.”
New City Philippines magazine dealt with the fragile peace process in Mindanao (No 1/2013) and education for a culture of dialogue (No 6/2012). The award that was conferred during ICOM’s world congress in Panama City (September 28, 2013-October 5, 2013), gave recognition to the commitment of New City in easing the tensions of cultural and religious conflicts, recounting factual accounts of daily life in which there is a sense of reciprocity, mutual respect and solidarity.
The Panama event brought together journalists and professionals from around the world who have had opportunities to study the problems of the American continent. It was in this context that the International Journalism Awards were conferred, on October 4, 2013 at the University of Panama.
In accepting the award, Jose Aranas, editor-in-chief of the Focolare’s magazine published in the Philippines, spoke about the cultural and religious context of his country, the only country in Asia with a Christian majority. He stressed how the articles leading to the conferring of the award were above all experiences of Focolare members from different religions who strive to live in the light of the Golden Rule that is present in one form or another in many sacred texts: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” (Mt. 7:12).