WASHINGTON, DC – The film Called and Chosen – Father Vincent R. Capodanno has been named winner of a 2018 Gabriel Award from the Catholic Press Association. The 90-minute film, which premiered on EWTN August 30, 2017, explores the life of the Maryknoll missionary-turned-military-chaplain who died a hero in combat during the Vietnam War. Father Capodanno was killed by enemy gunfire on Sept. 4, 1967, at the age of 38 in Vietnam’s Quế Sơn Valley, administering the sacraments to embattled U.S. Marines and pulling the wounded to safety. He posthumously received the Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest military decoration. His Cause of Canonization has been opened by the Catholic Church.
The Gabriel Awards are presented each year for films or programs that uplift and nourish the human spirit, affirm the dignity of human persons, and uphold universally recognized human values such as community, creativity, tolerance, justice, compassion, and the dedication to excellence. The Gabriel Awards are considered the largest Catholic communicators’ award program in North America with more than 26-hundred entries received annually from journalists, authors, students, broadcasters, and film producers. This year, only four dozen entries in 20 categories were chosen to receive either a first or second place award or an honorable mention. Called and Chosen won First Place in the category of Religious TV, National Release.
Called and Chosen was commissioned by the Father Capodanno Guild in partnership with EWTN. His Excellency, the Most Reverend Timothy P. Broglio, J.C.D., Archbishop for the Military Services, USA, created the Guild in 2013 to oversee Father Capodanno’s Cause for canonization. Guild Chairman, Capt. George Phillips, USMC (Ret.), said, “the Father Capodanno Guild undertook the task of making Called and Chosen to spread the news of this ‘Servant of God’ to a wider audience. We are grateful to the selection committee of the Gabriel Awards for selecting Called and Chosen as the winner in its category.”
Film Director James Kelty said that “winning an award is gratifying because it shows the hard work everyone put into the project was recognized. More important perhaps is that the award will bring the program, and the inspiring life and work of Father Vincent R. Capodanno, to a wider audience. My heartfelt thanks to the Capodanno Guild, EWTN, the Capodanno family, our marine vets, and the actors and crew who gave their all for this success.”
Recipients of a first place Gabriel Award receive a coveted Gabriel statuette. The statuette is designed and produced by the same company that makes the “Oscar” for the Academy Awards. The Gabriel Awards will be formally presented at the 2018 Catholic Media Conference June 12-15 in Green Bay, WI.