It takes three weeks to arrive and costs $250 per annum but that does not dissuade the 100-plus Australian subscribers to the official Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano.
L’Osservatore Romano has covered all major activities of the papacy since it began publishing in 1861, including Papal visits to Australia of Blessed Pope Paul VI, St John Paul II and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.
Its photographers have captured many iconic images, from Pope John Paul II visiting an industrial workplace in the Diocese of Parramatta to his reception of Most Rev Vincent Long OFM Conv, Bishop of Parramatta.
Bishops, religious houses and intellectuals are the key Australian subscribers, including several in the Diocese of Parramatta.
Subscribers see it as a special devotion to the Holy Father to receive the weekly print edition in English, which contains the speeches and actions of Pope Francis and reports on the official affairs of the Holy See’s dicasteries.
Br Vincent Brooks CCS has been the Australian agent for the sale of L’Osservatore Romano since 1978.
The perpetually professed Brother in the Confraternity of Christ the Priest has used his professional administration expertise to help those who want to be better informed of the Church’s teachings and endeavours.
Br Vincent said the agency service emerged to assist people with the complexity of making international payments and subscriptions.
The internet is changing how people engage with L’Osservatore Romano.
“The younger generation of Catholics have a preference for instant news and information and therefore use online websites to access their needs,” Br Vincent said.
“Having a subscription through the internet system gives immediate contact anytime rather than waiting for the delivery to come by mail, sometimes two to three weeks after publication, because of the distances involved.”
Br Vincent also coordinates subscriptions for people in Samoa, New Caledonia and Papua New Guinea.
He has also distributed many copies of the Confraternity’s magazine Contact to people in the Diocese over many years. These subscribers resulted from one-off promotional visitations to parishes including Holy Family Parish, Granville, St Margaret Mary’s Parish, Merrylands and St Patrick’s Parish, Guildford.
Visit the Christ the Priest website for more information.