Magazines on the family: the experience of “NOI genitori & figli” (We parents and children)

Magazines on the family: the experience of “NOI genitori & figli” (We parents and children)

Despite the ongoing crisis, the family remains a fundamental human and social resource. The experience of “ NOI genitori & figli” , a supplement of the daily Italian Catholic newspaper called Avvenire, shows that it is possible to give insights to this reality by highlighting difficulties in a balanced way and many positive aspects simply by leaving aside the customary stereotypes. We asked Luciano Moia the deputy editor of the monthly supplement and journalist of the Avvenire daily some questions to get a closer look at this interesting magazine.

Mr. Moia, how and when did "NOI genitori & figli" start?

The monthly magazine started in 1997 to represent and give a voice to all those supposed normal families who wanted to understand how to carry out their commitment in society and in the Church. It is for couples who are conscious that marriage is a precious resource for themselves, their children and for society as a whole. It is for couples who reject the low profile and banal turn of phrase “as long as it lasts” and recognise the value of their relationship not only on an educative level but also social and cultural. NOI is read by all types of people and not just by observant couples as the readers recognise themselves in the slogan “all that is good for the family is good for society”, that is, ourselves and everyone. The more the family tries to do its best to carry out its commitments, the more society benefits from this.

News, in-depth studies, specials and interviews…. The magazine gives space for all kinds of themes.

NOI addresses issues which regard the family… that is practically everything: marital relationships, separation and divorce, sexuality, educating children, work problems, immigrant families, Internet risks. sanitary problems, the elderly, the handicapped, all walks of life, solidarity. We have a competent team of journalists (who write for Avvenire and outside collaborators) who are entrusted with and responsible for the contents. The contribution of specialists from various fields is particularly valuable.

The magazine has a modern, fresh look to it and has particular to details and ample space for photographs. Its contents are interesting to read but at the same time it has a formal harmonious format. What criteria do you use?

Without a doubt simplicity, readability and immediateness. We stay clear from complex graphics and sensational images and stick to clear pictures which are at times of an iconographical level.

We live immersed in a flow of connections of multiple access. In what way do social medias and tablets influence habits and divulge the information given by NOI?

It is very easy to get carried away by a revolution with so many lights but which all has so many shadows. The criteria we use is wisdom and moderation … something which many families also try to put into practice as they know how difficult it is to use the Internet without running high risks.

There is an abundance of “periodicals” on the family available at kiosks and on the Internet. In what way is NOI different from the others?

To tell you the truth, I don’t see all this abundance but there is certainly a great deal of gossip, superficiality and sensationalism. We of NOI analyse issues extensively and address serious problems that people have with the purpose of contributing to improving their lives.

Browsing through the pages one notices there are few advertisements: Is there a particular reason for this? Could it be a synergy with Avvenire or a general flexion in advertising investments or maybe a precise choice has been made considering the themes you deal with and the target they appeal to?

I would prefer not to go into detail on this matter but let’s say there’s a bit of everything you have said…

There is growing excitement for the Extraordinary Synod on the family called by Pope Francis. What special numbers will readers expect to see in view of the appointment which promises to bring renewed hope?

We started last October by announcing and explaining the reasons for the Synod. In each number the readers will find approximately ten pages filled with interviews and extensive studies which aim to focus on giving clear answers to questions… from the famous questionnaire sent to every parish around the world to obtain “fresher” answers to urgent issues regarding the family and couples.

While we are on the subject of urgent issues and inedited challenges “NOI genitori & figli” has always dedicated much space to family-media relationships, a subject which all too often underlines thorny questions. In what way are these questions approached and what advice can you give based on your experience as an expert and a father?

The subject is vast, complex and requires urgent attention. It is impossible to deal with this question and give a brief answer. However, I think the principle by which we are inspired is to propose something when it can only do good, which can educate and can help to read problems in a positive light.

We would like to thank you for the precious time you have to us …but before we finish I would like you to describe NOI in three adjectives.

Good question! I would say …essential, friendly and positive. But I would also add “surprising” (at times!).