Acadiana Catholic
Submission Guidelines

    The Acadiana Catholic is the official newspaper of the Lafayette Diocese. The purpose of this monthly publication is to report news stories and promote religious events within the eight civil parishes that make up the diocese. In helping the limited staff to meet this goal, submissions from volunteer correspondents are always welcome. However, if you would like to submit news stories or photographs to the newspaper, there are a few helpful items the staff would like you to remember.

What types of stories or photos should I submit?
    Over 100 individual church parishes fall under the jurisdiction of the Lafayette Diocese, along with 35 Catholic schools and a number of diocesan departments that help to support them all. With this in mind, the staff of the Acadiana Catholic requests that anyone submitting news items to the paper please consider its newsworthiness. Examples of newsworthy items include:

  • An interview with a newly assigned pastor, associate, or other such official.
  • The election of new Parish Council officers
  • New parish or school projects or programs
  • Bazaars, missions, retreats, parish anniversaries, or other special events

    Please note that routine and everyday activities of a church parish, school or other organization do not quality as newsworthy. Due to space constraints and a commitment to covering all aspects of the diocese equally, the Acadiana Catholic cannot publish such items.

What information do I include with my submission?
    When writing a news release, remember to be brief yet thorough. Include the time, date and place of your story. Identify any church parishes, schools, and organizations involved. You may also include the appropriate contact information for readers to follow up if they choose. Avoid excessive descriptions; the editor and staff of the Acadiana Catholic do reserve the right to edit and revise all submitted copy if it is too long. Please refer to the other side of this flyer for examples of acceptable and unacceptable press releases.

What format should I use to submit my story or photo?
    News stories should be sent to the Acadiana Catholic on standard 8 1/2” x 11” white paper; use 1” margins and double spacing. On the upper right hand corner of the first page, include the name, phone number, and/or email address of the contact person for the story. This is a must in case the editor has any additional questions about the story.
    Photographs should be sent in with an attachment that clearly and properly identifies each individual pictured. Be sure to provide the correct spellings and titles for everyone. You may also include a brief description of what is happening in the photo. The same contact information required for a news story is also required for photographs.
    Please note that submitted photos will not be returned unless it is requested. If you would like your photo returned, include a self-addressed stamped envelope when you send it. Otherwise, all photographs will be kept on file in the Acadiana Catholic offices.
 
Where should I send my news stories and photos?
    News stories may be submitted to the Acadiana Catholic a number of ways. They can be hand delivered to the office, located in the Immaculata Center at 1408 Carmel Avenue, Lafayette, LA, 70501; they may also be mailed in to the same address, with the attention line ATTN: Acadiana Catholic. News stories may also be faxed to (337) 261-5560. Lastly, they can be sent by email to tom@dol-louisiana.org or to stephm@dol-louisiana.org. Remember to appropriately identify your submission in the subject line of the email.
    Photographs cannot be faxed, but all other methods of delivery apply. However, if they are sent by email, they must be sent as either a TIFF (*.tif) or JPEG (*.jpg) file

When should I send in my news stories and photos?
    The deadline for all submissions to the Acadiana Catholic is the 15th day of the month preceding the desired month of publication. The date may seem early, but please remember that the staff will be working on other stories and other submissions will be coming in. Sending your news story and/or photograph in as soon as possible helps to ensure that space will be available to print it. Keep in mind that you can never submit an item too early; it can always be held on file until it is time to run it.
    If you have any further questions, please contact any member of the office staff:

Tom Sommers, Editor (337)261-5513
    Email: tom@dol-louisiana.org
Kathleen Toups, Staff Writer (337) 261-5511
Stephanie Martin, Staff Writer (337) 261-5512
    Email: stephm@dol-louisiana.org
    Office hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon Friday.

Sample Press Releases
    The following is an example of a poor and unacceptable press release:

    The dynamic, well-known group which forms the parish council has announced that its second meeting will be held on Thursday, March 20. Our beloved pastor, Father John O’Brien, will open the meeting with a prayer and then he will talk about the plans he has outlined for us. Father’s talks are always interesting and we are happy he will be there. Some women of the council are planning to serve coffee and homemade donuts at the meeting which will also discuss painting the gym, the church debt, and the teen dance scheduled for Memorial Day weekend. Everyone is invited, even if you are not a council member.

    This example is too long, and it does not provide all of the necessary information. No church parish is identified, and no meeting place or time is given. Also, no contact name is given for the story, which means the editor has no way of calling to obtain the missing information.
    A better approach to submitting this press release would be as follows:

Jane Doe
(555) 555-5555
JaneDoe@email.com

    The second meeting of the St. Agatha Parish Council is scheduled for Thursday, March 20 at 7:00 p.m in the school auditorium. Topics for discussion will include school repairs, finances, and a teen dance. Father John O’Brien, pastor, will speak at the meeting. Refreshments will be served; all parishioners are invited to attend.


    Contact information is given in case the editor has any questions, and the text is short and precise. The double spacing leaves room for editor's comments and marks in case any changes need to be made.


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