National Catholic Register
|Founder(s)||Rev. Msgr. Matthew J. Smith|
|Staff writers||Tim Drake
|Founded||November 8, 1927|
The National Catholic Register is the oldest national Catholic newspaper in the United States. It was founded on November 8, 1927 by Msgr. Matthew J. Smith as the National Edition of the Denver Catholic Register.  Content includes news and features from the United States, the Vatican, and worldwide, on such topics as culture, education, books, arts and entertainment, as well as interviews. Online content includes various blogs and breaking news.
The Register's print edition is published (bi-weekly, 26 times a year) and owned by EWTN NEWS, Inc. Tom Wehner has been the managing editor since 2009. Jeanette DeMelo became editor in chief in 2012.
The National Catholic Register began as the national edition of the Archdiocese of Denver's Denver Catholic Register. The first national edition was published on November 8, 1927. Under the direction of Rev. Msgr. Matthew J. Smith, it grew into the Register System of Newspapers by merging with various diocesan newspapers, such as Cincinnati's Catholic Telegraph. The Register reached a peak circulation of over 700,000 in the 1950s across 35 diocesan editions and the national edition.
California businessperson Patrick Frawley bought the newspaper in 1970 and later moved it to Los Angeles. The Register emphasized in-depth commentary on religion and culture. Throughout the 1970s and 80s, it attracted young and promising writers like George Weigel, William McGurn, Robert Moynihan, Phil Lawler and Greg Erlandson.
Under Legionary control, the paper restored its emphasis on news, expanded (it added the "Vatican" and "Culture of Life" sections), and made the printed paper more colourful.
When rising costs forced a reduction in frequency from weekly to biweekly, the Register expanded its Web presence with NCRegister.com, with daily breaking news, exclusive online content and free commentary by popular Catholic bloggers. In November, in a further effort to cut costs, the editorial offices were relocated from Connecticut to the Legionaries’ Center for Higher Studies in Thornwood, N.Y.
Purchase by EWTN
“The Register is a perfect addition to our teaching apostolate,” noted Warsaw. “We live in an age where there is so much distortion and misrepresentation of the Church’s teaching by forces who oppose her message, particularly in the secular news media. Being sure that the Church’s voice is heard clearly and accurately has always been the core of EWTN’s mission,” he said. “Continuing the tradition of the Register gives us another means to carry out our mission of service to the Church.”
“The service and the history of the paper are too important to simply abandon,” said Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver, where the newspaper originated. “The Church needs more tools of faithful communication, not fewer.”
Archbishop Chaput said that he doesn’t feel that the Register’s basic mission of “reporting the news and analyzing trends that are important for Catholics, from a Catholic perspective,” will change. “The means of accomplishing that mission may change quite a lot over time, but the Register’s fidelity to the Church will not.”
Father Kearns described the acquisition by EWTN as “a natural and a happy fit.” “EWTN has earned a reputation of fidelity to the magisterium, which has always characterized the Register,” he said. “This represents a continuity of fidelity to the Church and support of the bishops. The Register’s mission is to equip its readers to engage the secular culture with competence and confidence, and EWTN intends to continue, strengthen and develop that mission.”
In September 2011, EWTN Radio launched the weekly news radio program "Register Radio," in order to bring the resources of the National Catholic Register to a radio-listening audience. The interview-style program is co-hosted by Thom Price and the Register's senior writer, Tim Drake.
- Catholic News Agency
- Faith & Family Magazine
- Zenit News Agency
- Mark P. Shea, a Register blogger.
- "EWTN to acquire National Catholic Register". EWTN News. EWTN. Jan 19, 2011. Retrieved July 26, 2011.
- "Publisher’s Page". National Catholic Register.
- "National Catholic Register Acquired by EWTN". National Catholic Register. EWTN. Jan 19, 2011. Retrieved Jan 20, 2011.
- "History". The Catholic Telegraph. Archdiocese of Cincinnati. 2009. Retrieved September 6, 2013.
- National Catholic Register Website