Guest Columnists

Crux Featuring the Best of Brooklyn in Currents News

Christopher White and Lidia Curanaj during a segment of Currents News.

by John L. Allen Jr.

When I was growing up in the 1970s and ’80s, I was something of a baseball nerd, which is how I fell hard in love with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Bear in mind, this was a full two decades after “Dem Bums” had pulled up stakes and left for the West Coast, breaking hearts in the borough forever.

Reading up on the history of the game, I became enchanted by the story of the 1940s and ’50s Dodgers, this gritty little franchise whose most famous motto – “Wait ‘till next year!” neatly captures the power of hope that’s such an essential ingredient of both baseball and Catholicism. Names such as Pee Wee Reese, Gil Hodges and Duke Snider became as familiar as family members, although I never even saw a replay of the Dodgers’ fabled 1955 World Series triumph until much later.

That background adds a bit of personal excitement to the professional pride with which I make the following announcement: Crux is now featuring a daily digest of content from “Currents News,” the flagship daily TV news program of Brooklyn-based DeSales Media Group. DeSales provides media and technology services to the Diocese of Brooklyn and other dioceses around the country.

From the beginning of Crux as an independent enterprise in 2016, DeSales Media Group has been a critically important partner. I recall meeting President and Chairman of DeSales Msgr. Kieran Harrington back then, who outlined a broader vision for building a nationally and internationally relevant Catholic media enterprise, seeing the relationship with Crux as one part of that bigger picture.

In the intervening three years, “Currents News,” now under the leadership of Vito Formica, executive director of news content and development and a veteran of big-time TV journalism, has taken impressive strides in that direction. It has become a well-produced, well-reported, and ambitious program that delivers a smart take on the day’s news without ideological bias and without the sort of nastiness that, unfortunately, characterizes so much Catholic discussion these days.

Crux journalists sometimes appear on “Currents News,” especially national correspondent Chris White, who’s also part of Formica’s team in Brooklyn. We’ve also joined forces to cover major stories, including the World Meeting of Families in Dublin, Ireland, in August 2018, and the aftermath of the devastating fire that almost consumed the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris last year.

Watching the show today, “Currents News” comes off as living proof that even in the TV realm, you can be faithfully Catholic without being smarmy or uncritical, intelligent without being insulting or intransigent, and accessible without being superficial. It covers the news in general, both secular and religious, from a Catholic perspective, and its scope is global, reaching well beyond the boundaries of the Diocese of Brooklyn.

Right now, there’s a new section on the Crux homepage titled “Featured Content from Currents News,” presenting a rotating selection of five or six of the latest segments from the newscast most likely to be of interest to our readers. Clicking on one of those stories will take you to their web site, where you can also check out their other offerings, including links to The Tablet, The Diocese of Brooklyn’s newspaper.

Really, “Currents News” reminds me a good deal of those Dodgers of yesteryear – a gutsy team that plays a smart, inspiring game so you can’t help rooting for them, populated by engaging and inspiring personalities, and which keeps getting better.

And here’s the good news: Unlike the Dodgers, “Currents News” isn’t going anywhere. It’s also here to stay on Crux, where we’re honored to make it part of our daily lineup.


Allen Jr. is the editor of Crux, specializing in coverage of the Vatican and the Catholic Church.

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