Powerful Television Commercials Driving Catholics Back into the Pews (and Confessionals)
By John-Henry Westen
PHOENIX, September 22, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Statistically church-going Catholics are pro-life, and pro-family. However, many nominal Catholics (in some parts of North America, the majority of Catholics) are non Church-going and thus tend to fall in with the general population in terms of adherence to life and family values. However, an innovative media company is changing those statistics by airing a series of powerful commercials which have been shown to drive Catholics back to church in droves.
Catholics Come Home Inc., an independent, non-profit is the group behind the current TV advertising campaign that is contributing to thousands of lapsed Catholics returning to the active practice of their faith. The commercials direct the viewer to the www.CatholicsComeHome.org website to explore answers to questions of faith, and to utilize the site’s parish-finder feature to locate their local parish community.
The campaign originally aired in the initial test markets of Phoenix, AZ and Lexington, KY, where after a three week campaign more that six thousand lapsed Catholics found their way back to the Catholic Church. 3.5 Million people (99%) within Phoenix and Northern Arizona saw the commercials, 14 times per person, during the three weeks leading up to Easter Sunday.
During the campaign one priest wrote Catholics Come Home to say: "I have heard more confessions this Lent than ever before!" crediting the commercials with the dramatic rise in Catholics returning to the sacrament. "Many have mentioned the commercial. I gave someone a tour of the Church who hasn’t attended since the 1950’s. He saw the commercial, showed up and said ‘I’m home’."
Another priest related, "I heard 16 confessions that first week as a direct result of those commercials."
Personal testimonies sent to the Come Home team are powerful. "I’ve been away from the church for over 35 years," said one viewer, "and over the past 20 years I have become agnostic.. and yet? For me to actually look this site up from a TV ad says a lot! I even looked up the Mass times at my local parish!"
Tom Peterson, CCH Founder and President informed LifeSiteNews.com that the ads are slated to air in major US markets this year, including Atlanta, Chicago, Corpus Christi, Colorado Springs, Lincoln, and eventually on National networks and possibly even the Super Bowl.
To see the ads for yourself visit the website: