How to Start an Institutional Apostolate, Part 2—Jeff Mirus


Jul 10, 2018

This episode is for anyone who believes he is called to found a
Catholic apostolate, or anyone who is overseeing one already. In
this second part of a two-part interview,
founder Jeff Mirus shares more lessons from his decades of
experience founding several Catholic organizations.

In the mid-80s he left Christendom College to start a publishing
company. Then circumstances forced him to transition away from
full-time apostolic work which, though painful at the time,
providentially set the stage for him to return on more sustainable
terms, leading to the present online apostolate.



Part 1 of the Jeff Mirus interview

Books mentioned

Fr. William Most, The Consciousness of Christ

Read online:

Buy used:

The Fr. William Most Collection

Timothy T. O’Donnell, Heart of the Redeemer

Warren H. Carroll, The Guillotine and the Cross

Jeffrey Mirus, Reasons for Hope

Jeffrey Mirus, The Divine Courtship

Dennis Larkin, A Walk to Rome

Review of St. Katharine Drexel biography


Show Notes:

Jeff Mirus interview


1:20 Summary of Part 1

3:50 Jeff leaves Christendom College to start a publishing
company, Trinity Communications

5:54 Why Jeff doesn’t like looking backwards

8:49 Getting Trinity off the ground using Christendom’s mailing

10:45 Jeff’s two books, Reasons for Hope and The
Divine Courtship

11:34 Efficiency of running a small company without a board of
trustees and political battles

12:50 Some of the best books Jeff published: Carroll’s The
Guillotine and the Cross
, Fr. Most’s The Consciousness of
, Larkin’s A Walk to Rome, O’Donnell’s
Heart of the Redeemer

15:37 Failure of Trinity as a publisher in 1991, Jeff’s
realization that he could not do apostolic work full-time

16:34 Jeff learns to program, begins computer consulting and
online apostolate, Catholic Resource Network, work for EWTN

19:35’s predecessor, PetersNet, begins in
1996—funded by computer consulting business

21:24 Trinity does all the programing for Phil Lawler’s Catholic
World News, then a separate company

23:16 Importance of making it so Jeff could be removed by other
board members if he ever went against the Church

24:27 Why God forced Jeff away from full-time apostolic work in
order to put him in a position where he could both support his
family and serve the Church without overworking himself

25:33 Programming analogy: Elegant solutions to problems vs.
using “brute force”; importance of standing back from problems and
learning to delegate and work with a team

30:12 Differences between PetersNet and

32:31 Ethos distinguishing from other
faithful Catholic websites when it started in 2003

35:56 Trinity buys Catholic World News in 2006; transition from
funding via for-profit company to email-solicited donations just in
time for 2008 financial crisis and dissolution of Trinity

43:19’s reciprocal model of support;
depending on Divine Providence rather than being an institution
that exists to perpetuate itself

48:03 Future of Trinity Communications and
transitioning away from Jeff’s leadership

50:01 Final advice for those doing apostolic work: “Unless the
LORD builds the house, he labors in vain who builds it.” (Psalm

51:59 This week’s excerpt: St. Katharine

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