Since Mission Sunday, October 23, 2016, a new missionary website of the Oblates’ Polish Province has been open. Its first six months of activity have confirmed that it is a site that is truly needed.
“An average of about 85,000-100,000 users regularly read www.misyjne.pl, some of whom visit the site several times a day. The subjects it covers attract notice and cause internet users to readily return to us. It is well rated by its audience and is among the top five Catholic portals in Poland. We would like to see it in third place by the end of the year,” says Mr. Michal Józwiak, who is responsible for the site.
The www.misyjne.pl portal was started in order to evangelize with reliable information about the Church, society, culture, and religions. Its task is to build a society of persons and communities interested in the missions, particularly the Oblate missions, as well as the persecution of Christians. Missionaries from the furthest corners of the world publish blogs on the site. They share their own observations and reflections, but most of all they show the behind-the-scenes work in the missions. They share poignant photographs and stories. Also published are opinions of theologians, people of culture and of science.
“The portal evolved from our periodical “Misyjne Drogi” (Missionary Way), which has a current circulation of about 25,000 and which is available by subscription in 850 parishes, secular stores and kiosks, and as of this year, on e-book readers. We are aware that it was not reaching young and middle-aged people, who generally do not use print media as much, and from that came the idea to reach out with evangelization and information in this way,” says Fr. Marcin WRZOS, editor-in-chief of the periodical and of the site, “I must say that the site was able to come into being thanks to the good will of the province’s administration.”
The editorial office of misyjne.pl and of “Misyjne Drogi” also conducts a program known as “mission adoption” which includes 500 children from schools in Madagascar, Bangladesh, Nepal, and India. Thanks to their adoptive parents these pupils are guaranteed their tuition, school uniforms, necessary equipment, and medical care. It is constructive aid. Thanks to it they will have the prospect of getting better jobs, and therefore significantly higher salaries.
The specific editorial team for the periodical and the site is made up of Oblates: Marcin WRZOS (editor-in-chief, journalist); Blazej MIELCAREK (graphic designer);, Wojciech KLUJ (consultant for missiology and religious studies); Marek SWAT (circulation); as well as laity: Michal Józwiak (responsible for the site, journalist); Aleksander Barszczewski (journalist, video material); Kinga Baszczuk (proofreader, journalist); Sandra Sekowska (accounting); Zofia Kedziora (journalist, radio material); Joanna Michalak (administration office); Lukasz Tadyszak (social campaigns); Magdalena Zarate Rios (journalist); as well as Fr. Pawel Kucia (journalist). Twelve Oblates co-operate permanently with the periodical and site, recording bible meditation videos, in addition to one cartoonist, as well as approximately 45 journalists of whom almost all are volunteer workers. It is a delight to have the presence of these committed lay people.
The portal and periodical are present on the most popular social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat, thanks to which ideas about the mission and information reach readers even more quickly. Every person with a mission will find something of interest here.