By Tim Lilley
The Message editor
Thank you for your ongoing support of Southwest Indiana’s Catholic community newspaper. We are truly grateful – especially now because the past month has been a real adventure for The Message staff.
It all began Nov. 2, when the manager of the plant that was, at that time, printing the paper for us called to say that its parent company had decided – less than 24 hours earlier – to close the plant permanently, and immediately.
Staff at the plant were kind enough to print the Nov. 4 issue of The Message, and the plant manager emailed contact information for other companies relatively near Evansville that might be able to print The Message moving forward. Two phrases in that last sentence proved unsettling for us.
The first: “relatively near Evansville.” The second: “might be able to print The Message.”
In that moment, the Diocese of Evansville’s weekly community newspaper – published continuously since October 1970 – had no printer of record. We did, however, have an issue that would need printed in seven days.
The printer who shut down its plant in early November was the latest form of the company that had printed every issue of The Message since it began. It’s a little sad to know that chapter has ended; but The Message must go on.
And it will, thanks to the folks at AIM Media in Greenfield, Indiana, which is east of Indy along I-70. We knew that AIM could print The Message. It actually had bailed our old printer out a few times over the past 3-4 months by printing our paper for them. We knew you would get the highest-technical-quality print newspaper we could deliver with AIM doing our printing.
The elephant in the room, however, is the other statement I highlighted earlier: “relatively near Evansville.” Greenfield is roughly 180 miles from Evansville. For the past several years, The Message has been printed in Shepherdsville, Kentucky, just outside of Louisville; it’s roughly 130 miles from Evansville.
AIM Media is proving to be a wonderful partner, but its location and its current list of customers directly affect our print subscribers.
For the foreseeable future, AIM will not be able to get The Message to the Evansville post office before Friday – a day later than our old printer. That has been the case for the past three issues, and for this one. AIM has pledged to work with us to try to find a way to recover our old schedule and get the print edition to you at least a day earlier; but it can’t happen just now.
We know that many people don’t care for digital newspapers and magazines. We understand. But we have to note that, if you’re a print subscriber and care to provide us with a current email address, we will send you a link every Thursday that will enable you to access the digital edition of that week’s issue.
It is the same newspaper that comes to your mailbox, but it’s a digital product – and it’s very versatile.
Because it is a PDF, you can download it to your computer, tablet, phone or any digital device that can open PDF files. Once downloaded, you can read the digital edition anytime, anywhere; you do not need internet access to read The Message after you download it.
We provide print subscribers with access to the digital edition at no extra charge if they provide us with a current email address. We do not – and will not ever – use that address for anything other than sending you the weekly digital link. We hope you will give it a try.