The Father James Alberione Story
Welcome to the official site of the film “Media Apostle: The Father James Alberione Story.”
Blessed Father James Alberione, SSP, 1884-1971, was a priest from Northern Italy who had profound insight into the world of media and did much to get the Church evangelizing with the latest media technology. He founded the PaulineFamily.com, 10 congregations and institutes of bishops, priests, religious and laity–forming them in his Pauline apostolic spirituality, and calling them to be St. Paul the Apostle living today. Father Alberione’s official international website: Alberione.org.
“…A MARVEL OF OUR TIMES…”
Pope Paul VI
“…THE FIRST APOSTLE OF THE NEW EVANGELIZATION…”
Pope John Paul II
“…THAT GREAT APOSTLE OF COMMUNICATIONS…”
“A beautiful and fitting tribute to Blessed James Alberione–the man who, along with the Pauline Family, anticipated the springtime of the New Evangelization.”
Very Reverend Robert Barron – Founder, Word on Fire, Creator of the CATHOLICISM Series
“I was captured by the witness of his fierce pursuit of holiness and his mission to bring the Gospel to modern culture with the most effective and relevant means. How could you not love this guy?!”
Angele Regnier – Co-founder of CCO (Catholic Christian Outreach–Canadian Campus Ministry)
“An entrepreneur, filmmaker, visionary and saint who refused to stay behind communication’s cutting edge. A true inspiration for artists and media apostles.”
Ryan O’Connell – Filmmaker, Life Teen International
“Is there a spirituality for our media-centered world? Yes! Blessed James Alberione has laid it out for us. See it in this film.”
+ Terrence Prendergast, SJ – Archbishop of Ottawa, Canada
ABOUT THE FILM
An updated film on the life, media work and media spirituality of Blessed James Alberione was long overdue. In 2007, we Daughters of St. Paul began work on a 90-minute documentary. Fundraising began immediately–and people’s generosity was overwhelming. Next, we hired Spirit Juice Studios, Chicago, to bring their artistic expertise to the filming and editing of the project which included a teaser-trailer, a trip to Italy, crashing a Pauline bus pilgrimage, and getting kicked out of St. Paul’s Outside the Walls.
The film was then split into two films: an abridged format of 50 minutes for shorter gatherings and broadcast time-frames, as well as the in-depth 90-minute film. Both are the on the DVD. The 90-minute version also covers Alberione and women, Alberione’s devotion to Mary, Alberione’s inspiring old age, Alberione’s plan for Media Literacy Education, additional interviews, and other aspects of his life and ministry.
The Daughters of St. Paul are eager to see what the Lord is going to do through this humble little film that we hope will familiarize our media world with Fr. James Alberione, and unleash the Pauline charism for a new generation!
ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS
After studying screenwriting at UCLA and ACT ONE, Hollywood (www.actoneprogram.com), I fiddled around writing spec scripts (lighthearted fictional feature films about a bishop in Las Vegas, a Catholic hockey team in Canada, a rabid environmentalist in California). When I realized these didn’t have a snowball’s chance in Hades of ever being produced, I decided to do a feature film on the amazing life of our amazing Founder, the amazing Blessed James Alberione (that’s a whole lotta amazing).
But a good friend and fellow filmmaker, Friar John Clote, OFM Conv, stopped me. “Sister! It’ll cost millions to do a period piece like this, even if you get a lot of the work donated. Do a documentary first—make Fr. Alberione known.” Thus, in 2007, we Daughters of St. Paul embarked on a thrilling adventure and full-contact sport: documentary filmmaking. We approached several film companies to do the shooting, editing and technical work, but it quickly became clear that we should only be looking at one company: www.SpiritJuiceStudios.com in Chicago, owned and operated by Rob Kaczmark. Spirit Juice had a fresh, young sensibility, combined with a state-of-the-art, classic aesthetic leading to creative and enduring storytelling. I learned much from my collaboration with Spirit Juice Studios, not only about the artistry of visual narrative, but also about walking the walk as Catholic artists.
GLORIA DEO + PAX HOMINIBUS!
Sr. Helena Raphael Burns, fsp
When the Daughters of St. Paul first approached Spirit Juice about creating a full-length documentary on their Founder, we were both very excited and a little nervous at the scale of the project. Back in 2010, we were a younger company, really just beginning to understand the craft and beauty of filmmaking, and the idea of a massive documentary seemed a bit intimidating. We spoke about traveling to Italy for interviews, shooting all over the United States, and a story that really needed to be told on an epic scale. We accepted the challenge, and seven years later we are very proud of the film that has come forth.
As a company fully dedicated to excellence in Catholic media, we are very excited to see the story of Fr. James Alberione told to the world. Alberione is truly a man of our time, and his example serves as a real inspiration for the work we do each and every day as a film studio. Working with Sr. Helena and the Daughters has also been a great blessing—Fr. Alberione’s legacy continues on with such talented and committed religious sisters dedicated to using the media for the Gospel.
I would like to personally thank the camera operator, Danny Hidalgo, and our editor, Greg Krajewski, for their attention to detail, and perseverance in the great undertaking of creating this film. Their hard work and passion made this film a reality. We hope you enjoy (and share) this film about the priest who truly loved our media world.
producer/director of photography
ABOUT THE DAUGHTERS OF ST. PAUL
The Daughters of St. Paul are a community of vowed women religious who dedicate their lives to sharing the mystery of Christ’s love with the people of today through the media. God has chosen, called, and consecrated each Daughter of St. Paul to himself so that he might send her to proclaim the Good News of a loving God who sends his Son into a world that is desperate for hope.
Our world has become a global media network that overwhelms us with information, but often leaves us empty and longing for more: for love, hope, meaning, and connection. As communicators of Christ, immersed in the culture of communication, the Daughters of St. Paul offer the Gospel to all people as the way to find the “ultimate Connection”—an encounter with Christ that will not only fill them with hope, but transform them so that they too can be Christ’s love, peace, and justice in the world.
Founded in Italy by Blessed James Alberione and Venerable Thecla Merlo in 1915, the Daughters of St. Paul are a pontifical congregation of women religious present now in over 50 nations around the world.
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