Click Here to View Copies of the Ecumedia Newsletter [1]

During the 1970’s, into the 1990’s, an interfaith ministry was formed by Shirley Koritnik, a Sister of Charity of Leavenworth, Kansas. This effort was known as “Ecumedia.” The aim of this ministry was to increase media access for religious leaders and members of diverse faith groups.  This included appearances on local radio and television programs. Sr. Shirley recognized that few religious groups understood how to approach radio and television networks with content proposals and resources. At the time, there was an influx in ecumenical activity in Kansas City, but a significant lack of corresponding media coverage. Ecumedia assisted local religious organizations in contacting radio and television managers and program directors, to contribute ideas and make appearances. [2] This generally consisted of ten, half hours a week, of programming. Notable broadcasts include a feature on homelessness aired on NBC WDAF-TV 4, a KCTV-5 series titled “For Our Times,” “Daybreak” with Dr. Larry Thorton aired on WDAF-TV 4, “Ecumedia Presents,” “Ecumedia’s Issues in the Media,” and “Ecumedia’s Family Matters,” hosted by the Rev. Paul Stephen Smith, on Channel 20. The series “Daybreak” featured coverage of the NAIN conference in Wichita, Kansas. The organization also offered an extensive film and video library. [3] Financial support was initially provided by Sr. Shirley’s religious community; however, over time, this financial support was not sustainable, and the program faded.[4]

[1] Ecumedia Newsletter; Community Video Advisory Board (CVAB) Records (K0403); The State Historical Society of Missouri Research Center-Kansas City.

[2] Guillot, Lawrence, interview by Geneva Blackmer. 2019. Ecumedia (January 3).

[3] Ecumedia Programs by Vern Barnet, The CRES Release/Many Paths Archives, Kansas City, Missouri.

[4] Guillot, Lawrence, interview by Geneva Blackmer. 2019. Ecumedia (January 3).