This, from Publishers' Weekly Religion Bookline:
How many publishing companies can say their founder is a saint? Two Catholic houses may soon be one step closer to being able to make that claim. Father James Alberione, the founder of two religious orders who run Catholic book publishing houses in the U.S., will be beatified by Pope John Paul II in Rome on April 27. Beatification is the final step before canonization or declaration of sainthood in the Catholic Church.
Alberione founded the Society of St. Paul, an order of priests and brothers that runs Alba House in New York, and the Daughters of St.Paul, the nuns whose Boston-based Pauline Books & Media is both a publisher and retailer, operating 20 bookstores around the country. Born in 1884 in Italy, Alberione began studying for the priesthood at age 16. On the night of December31, 1900, while in prayer, he had a religious experience in which he felt called to serve people of the new century through the emerging means of mass communication. He and his followers went on to publish books, magazines and newspapers and eventually used radio, television, audio and video production, as well as the Internet, to pursue their mission. Alberione died in 1971.
“"He was a little bit ahead of his time,”" said Father Edmund Lane, editor-in-chief at Alba House. “"His beatification authenticates his vision.”" Sister Sean Marie David Mayer of Pauline Books & Media agreed: “"This is significant for the publishing industry because it’'s the first time a person is being put forward as an example by the Catholic Church who really worked with publishing and media.”"
Mayer told BookLine the beautification announcement “"caught us rather by surprise.”" Most of the seven books Alberione wrote are out of print, although two compilations of his writings are due out in fall 2003. Pauline also just released a title about Alberione’'s spirituality, “"Life for the World”" (Mar.) by Sister Marie Paul Curley. The current definitive biography is Alba House’'s English translation of the Italian “"James Alberione: Apostle for Our Times”" by Luigi Rolfo (1987).Given Alberione’'s passion for mass communication, some say he’'s a shoe-in as a potential patron saint for the Internet. He already has his own Web site: www.Alberione.com. Says webmaster Sister Kathryn Hermes, “"If Alberione were alive today, he would be using the Internet.”"