Please note: This is not a Vatican site. Read the following for more information.
For the more complete story, here goes …..
Approximately 95% of the documents on the site were originally found on the Catholic Resource Network (CRNET) which later became EWTN Online Services aka EWTN.com. Trinity Communications was the owner of CRNET and has Petersnet (which is now called ‘Catholic Culture‘). Confused yet?
At some point in time, Petersnet gave permission to an individual in Australia, who operated a website called “St. Michael’s Depot”, to post the various Church documents that were originally found on CRNET. Most of the encyclicals on this site were scanned by CRNET from the 5 volume set, “The Papal Encyclicals 1740-1981” published by Pierian Press. For several years, St. Michael’s Depot included these documents, listed on a single index page of their website titled “Papal Encyclicals Online”.
Around the end of 1999 or the beginning of the year 2000, St. Michael’s Depot went offline.
Later on in the year 2000, several of us on the Catholicsource Message forum were lamenting the loss of such a great resource as St. Michael’s Depot. One of the forum participants commented that he had previously downloaded all the papal encyclicals from St. Michael’s Depot for his personal use.
At my request, he e-mailed me all of those documents so that I could make them available on the web again. This was the birth of the new “Papal Encyclicals Online”.
Changes to this website over time have included enhancements such as individual pages for each Pope, encyclical’s English titles, eReader files, an effective search engine, pictures of medieval Papal documents, and other more minor details added to help in research, for the search of individual documents, and ease of navigation.
In the year 2002, after being contacted by one of the webmasters at Petersnet (now Catholic Culture), they also gave me their approval for the use of these documents. Permission has also been granted from the LIBRERIA EDITRICE VATICANA (aka Vatican Publishing House) for this site to reprint Papal and Church documents in electronic format.
As far as the author of the Papal Encyclicals site …. I’m just a Catholic layman who’s trying to help keep these Church documents widely available. All monetary costs for the site, such as the domain name and web server fees, have come from my own personal pocket. Donations or advertising are not accepted. Prayers however are gladly accepted and appreciated.
The Papal Encyclicals Online webmaster.Today is 01-19-2021