Added on 06/02/2006
As Church of Ireland Publishing enters its second full year of operation, an important point of contact in the context of the wider world of publishing for the Churchâ€™s new publishing venture is membership of the Church Publishersâ€™ Network (CPN).
CPN operates under the auspices of the Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI) and is funded by that organisation. It has no formal constitution but operates as a â€œsharing and learningâ€? meeting point for those involved in church and religious publishing to share knowledge, expertise and support. In addition to CTBI, the membership of CPN includes representatives from the main churches in Britain: Church House Publishing (Church of England); the Church in Wales; the Welsh Centre for Religious Education; Methodist Publishing House; the Scottish Christian Press; Quaker Books; Salvationist Publishing and Supplies (Salvation Army); the Christian Education Movement and the United Reformed Church. Since March 2005, Church of Ireland Publishing has been represented on CPN by its Publications Officer, Dr Susan Hood.
CPN meets twice a year â€“ at the headquarters of CTBI in London for a business meeting, in October, and at another venue hosted by one of the member publishing houses. This latter meeting, which takes place in the spring, includes a presentation / question and answer session by a guest speaker.
Last year, Marion Sinclair of the Scottish Publishers Association addressed the network and provided a fascinating insight to the progress of publishing in Scotland, while at the forthcoming meeting of CPN in March, to be hosted by the Church in Wales, in Church House, Cardiff, a representative from Church Action on Disability (CHAD) will discuss issues and challenges facing publishers in relation to disability. CHAD is a charity that works in partnership with the Methodist Church offering advice and support to local churches and groups on a variety of issues relating to disability.
For the Church of Ireland, membership of the publishing network has opened up a new resource of information, advice and support for the future. Useful advice has been forthcoming in discussions with other members about such issues as website marketing, distribution; advertising; printing and retail costing. At each meeting, representatives show their recent publications and there has been a good deal of interest in Church of Ireland Publishingâ€™s titles to date: Alcohol in the life of young people (2004); A Church of Ireland bibliography (2005) and Go and do likewise: impacting upon our local communities (2005). More importantly, there is an opportunity to learn about what the bigger publishing houses are producing and how they run their operations.
It is hoped that for the spring meeting in 2007, Church of Ireland Publishing will be able to host the representatives of other church publishing houses at a CPN meeting in Dublin.