by ROWENA OREJANA
Seeing a niche that needed filling, Kiwi Catholic blogger Chelsea Houghton has come up with a website featuring the views of dozens of articulate young Australasian Catholics.
The aim of Restless Press is to provide high quality content on a range of topics, with an Oceania perspective, and to inspire Catholics of all ages.
The Christchurch based website was launched on October 1 last year and has already had 17,000 views.
It features articles mainly contributed by young Catholics from across New Zealand and Australia.
“I’ve been involved in similar types of blogs in the [United] States with the aim basically to
increase the quality of Catholic media and up and coming writers or existing media … and outside
of the United States, they don’t really seem to exist,” Mrs Houghton said. “So I thought we kind
of have a need for one here.”
It is a magazine-type website that is breaking stereotypes of Catholics.
“[It] shows Catholics are real people, too, so that we could talk about a broad range of stuff, not just about faith, but about how we live our daily life,” she explained.
The website has seven main article categories: action, culture, develop, inspire, wellbeing, vocation
Action, for example, is a category that delves into issues on which people can take a stand or act, while Culture encompasses things like fashion and movies.
The Develop category is about faith and formation, while Inspire includes sub-sections on prayer and seasons and feasts.
Initially, Mrs Houghton was aiming at young people, but with more people owning smartphones and tablets, the demographic widened.
She said there are now 44 contributors to the website, all passionate about what they write.
“My contributors are writing about things they are passionate about and their passion comes through and inspires other people to want to live like this,” she said.
“Evangelisation is also about writing things that you are passionate about.”
Mrs Houghton, 27, is married and has four children under 5 years old. She has a media and communications degree and was involved in the 2008 World Youth Day in Sydney, where she worked, among other things, on keeping up the digital media side of the event.
She previously worked with the Catholic Youth Pastoral Ministry in Christchurch. She also contributed to publications in the United States and was managing editor of a large website there.
At the moment, Restless Press is self-funded. Donations would be appreciated to spread and improve the
ministry. People can contact Chelsea through email@example.com.
by ROWENA OREJANA