Today journalist and author Matthew Archbold joins us. He writes for Catholic Digest and National Catholic Register, and is the author of the new book Faith Under Fire: Dramatic Stories of Christian Courage. In his book, Matthew writes, “Storytelling is at the heart of Christianity.” This book is a collection of stories of heroic virtue; the lives of just everyday people became marvelous examples of strength with their “yes” to the will of God. After listening to the show – you will want to be sure to get the book!
Jeff Reither is a husband, father, missionary, and evangelist. He returns to the show today after his mission trip to Uganda. Jeff has been going to Uganda for some years, and this year included the completion of a few projects, both a playground and a soccer field. The great thing is to look at how both of these grew out of tragedies, but now will be a joy to children who would normally not have these things. In addition to his mission trip, Jeff tells us about his upcoming pilgrimage to Rome and being able to sing at the closing Mass for the Year of Mercy! Jeff is an inspiration, and we will be sure to have Jeff on again after her returns.
Brenda St. John, my stepsister, joins us again today. Brenda and I are on the Camino in Spain and nearly to Santiago. We reflect about on our time on the Camino, what we anticipate by completing, and how we already understand that the Camino has forever changed our lives. Plus, we tell you about another great gift that will be waiting for us in Santiago!
We have stopped in Rabanal del Camino on our pilgrimage in Spain. The Benedictine Monastery of Monte Irago is here as a physical and spiritual respite for pilgrims on The Way. Abbot Jeremias Schroder is here for week each year, and we were blessed to have him join our program. We speak about the beauty of the Camino and the needs of the pilgrims. Abbot Jeremias shares his beautiful wisdom with such amazing joy! After listening to the show, you may learn more about the Missionary Benedictines at www.missionbenediktiner.de.
We are coming from the Camino in Spain, and this week Sister Elizabeth joins us. She is of the Augustinian Monastery of the Conversion, and she lives and works in Carrion, Spain on the Camino. Her order runs an albergue (a place for pilgrims). Their Augustinian hospitality makes for a spiritually beautiful stop on The Way. Sister shares her vocation story with us, and how the Camino was a part of her call to be a Bride of Christ!
We are joining you again from the Camino in Spain. We providentially stopped in Burgos on the Feast of Peter and Paul, who happen to be patrons of the city. We were part of many festivities, including a procession at the Cathedral, which honored Mary. Many groups brought flowers to Mary, but it was the very first group who caught my attention – a group from Radio Maria Spain! It was a marvelous respite on our pilgrimage!
The Camino has given us many surprises, and has made us grateful in ways that we hadn’t expected. We are in Logrono, Spain and are speaking today about the meditations and prayer that the Camino has given us, and brought out of us. Brenda speaks of her rosary meditations, and the veil between earth and heaven. And then the Camino gives us a few humorous surprises. Come join us on our pilgrimage!
My stepsister, Brenda St. John, joins me on the Camino in Spain. We have just begun our pilgrimage from St. Jean, France to Santiago, Spain. We give you a little history of the Camino, why we chose to do it, and how the first days have gone. Brenda, like many pilgrims, has felt the pull of the Camino since hearing about it in 2010. Brenda and I realized that each of us wanted to do this through our parents, and so we decided to undertake this pilgrimage together. In just the first days, the Camino has given us many gifts and friends. Join us on The Way!
What a gift to have Jeff Reither with us today. We had an early Father’s Day show. Jeff is a husband, father, missionary, and an evangelist. He and his wife, Laura, have a rather extraordinary story of love, children, loss and suffering, gratitude, and faith. Our conversation centered on his sons Joshua and Isaiah. You will be taken in by their stories; it is a beautiful witness to God’s unfailing love. In addition, Jeff will be taking another mission trip to Uganda. Today’s show is a preview of that trip, and Jeff will join us in a few months after his return.
To prepare for a pilgrimage to the Camino de Santiago de Compostela it was a gift to have Anne-Marie Klobe and Michele Denise Michaels with us. They walked the Camino in September of 2013. After a pilgrimage to Lourdes, they began. Anne-Marie would lead the way, as Michele would follow; she is blind, used a stick, and the sound of Anne-Marie’s voice to navigate the trail. After listening to the show, please see Anne-Marie’s prolife jewelry, and then get ready to be blown away by Michele’s music at her website!
The National Catholic Prayer Breakfast took place in Washington, D.C., this past week. Jacqueline Halbig von Schleppenbach is a board member, and was at the event. We spoke about the very inspirational speeches of His Eminence, Robert Cardinal Sarah, and St. Constance Veit with the Little Sisters of the Poor. You can find more information about the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast, and read the speeches here.
In addition today, longtime friend of the show, Fr. Aaron Kuhn joined us to speak about the Trinity on Trinity Sunday. He had such inspiring stories to share from his ministry. You will find a very concise description of the work of the Trinity in an example Father shares with families who are preparing for baptism.
It is Pentecost Sunday, and Dale Ahlquist, President of the American Chesterton Society, co-founder of the Chesterton Academy, author, and speaker, has joined us. He again brings us G.K. Chesterton, who was an evangelist in his own right. We spoke about the upcoming 35th annual Chesterton Conference that will be held August 4th-6th in Slippery Rock, PA. The list of speakers includes Dale, Bishop Robert Barron, Tim Powers, Joseph Pearce, and a host of others. Chesterton has childlike wonder of the Church; after listening to the program, go to sign-up for the conference at www.chesterton.org in order to spend a weekend full of Chestertonian joy!
We are in the midst of the Jubilee Year of Mercy, and Ann Marie Cosgrove is a witness to Divine Mercy. As a young girl, Ann Marie was raised in a Catholic family, received the Sacraments, but didn’t have a very full picture of what all this meant. She suffered some terrible wounds that affected her life and choices in life. This all led to a series of bad decisions and a distance from the Church. However, praying the Divine Mercy chaplet had a profound impact on her; she returned to the Church and sought God’s forgiveness through confession. This in turn led to forgiving herself and others. Ann Marie is a powerful witness to God’s Mercy. If you would like to contact Ann Marie for speaking, please contact her through www.cmgbooking.com.
John B. Manos joins us for a tribute to Mother Angelica. John and Mother go way back to the day when she convinced the young chemical engineer to work for her, which began an amazing journey. John is now a Vice President and General Counsel for EWTN. He is also the President of the Bellarmine Forum. You’ll love John’s stories of Mother; he speaks of her with love and gratitude.
Denise is a teacher and the Department Head of Math and Science at Chesterton Academy in Edina, Minnesota. In the summer of 2015 she walked the Camino de Santiago in Spain. She shares her physical and spiritual journey, and the many fruits of it. Denise gives such a beautiful description of “being poured out like a libation…” and how this was every bit a part of the Camino.
There were some amazing speakers at the Mercy: Encountering Boundless Love conference put on by W.I.N.E.: Women in the New Evangelization. Deb Hadley spoke about Your Amazing Life. After the loss of two adult children, a chance encounter in the grocery store had Deb meeting “The Zucchini Lady,” which was a life-changing encounter for both of them. You may see more of her story at www.womeninthenewevangelization.com
Sharon Wilson, the Chief Operating Officer for W.I.N.E, joined us. She told us about the workings of W.I.N.E. and her work in evangelization. Kelly Wahlquist also joined us, she is the founder of W.I.N.E. Kelly spoke about the national the national outreach.
Lisa Schiltz is a Professor of Law at the University of St. Thomas Law School in St. Paul, MN. Our discussion today was something so very close to her heart. She has a son with Down’s syndrome. Another Down’s child had asked her parents, “Will I have Down’s Syndrome in heaven?” Hear the child’s reaction to her parents’ answer, and hear how this then took hold in Lisa Schiltz’s mind. There is something to being an embodied soul, and a dignity that follows from this. What wonderful insight Lisa brings us!
Elizabeth Kelly is the managing editor of Logos: A Journal of Catholic Thought and Culture, an adjunct professor in Catholic Studies at the University of St. Thomas, an author, and singer. In her book, May Crowning, Mass, and Merton: 50 Reasons I Love being Catholic she writes on pilgrimage. The Church calls each of us to Pilgrimage whether in small ways or rather grand ways. Liz helps me prepare to go to the Holy Land, and then later to the Camino.
Jona Winkleman is the Director of Evangelization and Adult Faith Formation at the Church of St. Paul, in Ham Lake, Minnesota, and has a Licentiate in Dogmatic Theology from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas in Rome. She joins us for a second time. We just had to talk a little bit about her previous job as a Guide at the Scavi in Rome, which is the dig beneath the Basilica of St. Peter containing the bones of St. Peter. We then spoke about the work she has been doing recently on The Ocean of Mercy. The phrase inspired her, and she began to ponder Mercy as something into which you are immersed. She brings in St. Catherine of Siena, and has so many beautiful angles from which to ponder Mercy.
Kim Morgan is a licensed independent clinical social worker, a radio host, a wife, and mother to six children, and champion of life! She comes to us today to speak about keeping Advent alive with a family. Her family has a really wonderful Gaudete Sunday tradition, a Sunday of rejoicing! As she says is was desperate act of a housewife, but became a most amazing family day – “it is simple, and good, and fun!” She also speaks of many of the everyday goings on of family life. Kim has some great common sense advice on things from taking children to confession, forgiveness in the home, and having other adult mentors in your child’s life as they leave for college. What a wonderful, fresh look at the everyday!
There are few times in life when a story is this remarkable! Laura Sobiech is a wife, mother of four, and has found herself becoming and author and speaker. Her book, Fly a Little Higher: How God Answered a Mom’s Small Prayer in a Big Way is about the amazing journey she and her family have been on since discovering Zach’s terminal cancer. Zach died May 20, 2013, but his hit song Clouds still influences many. Join us as we speak about the opening of the Year of Mercy, how Zach experienced it, how he still teaches all of us, and how joy and mercy can be found in the midst of great suffering. After listening to the show, you may contact Laura, and find the book at her website: www.flyalittlehigher.com.
It is the first Sunday of Advent, which is a time of preparation for the coming of Christ! Father Joseph Johnson, pastor of Holy Family Catholic Church in St. Louis Park, MN, joined us today. He has a host of real life ways that we can prepare and witness during Advent. We spoke about the coming Year of Mercy, how it overlaps with the Year of Consecrated Life, and how appropriate this is. And we spoke of one of our favorite witnesses, His Excellency, Bishop Paul Dudley, of happy memory, and his overflowing joy as one of the greatest evangelization tools that we can all use.
What a great guest on Christ the King Sunday! The Dynamic Deacon – Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers joined us again. His recent book Behold the Man: A Catholic Vision of Male Spirituality will find you cheering as you read it. We began our conversation with the idea of young women reading the book so as to know the type of man they would like to marry, and for your men to read it to know the type of man they are able to be. There were so many times when I caught my breath as Deacon Harold was speaking – especially when he spoke of men and the upcoming Year of Mercy. After you listen to the show, you can find Deacon Harold at his website: http://deaconharold.com. You can get his book there – men and women will love it – and don’t forget one for your Adoration chapel!
Dr. Deborah Savage is a professor at the St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity in St. Paul, MN. She is the co-founder of the Siena Symposium for Women, and she joined us today to speak about the complementarity of men and women. This work began with the work of John Paul II. It was very enlightening to speak with her – and to hear such a beautiful message about the genius of both men and women. Dr. Savage will join us again when her new book is out, Woman and Man.
We were joined by Jeremy Stanbary today. He is the founder and Executive-Artistic Director of both Epiphany Studio and Open Window Theatre in Minneapolis, MN. Jeremy is a professional actor, a playwright, a husband, a father, and an evangelist. Jeremy spoke about the incarnational aspects of theater – and how the performing arts can be a meeting with Christ, and a conduit of conversion. You can find Jeremy at http://openwindowtheatre.org.
Blessing on All Saints Day! We welcomed Father Thomas Dufner to the show today. He is the pastor of The Church of the Epiphany in Coon Rapids, Minnesota. Father just returned from a Marian conference in Fatima where he spoke on children’s Eucharistic Adoration with the group Children of the Eucharist of the International World Apostolate of Fatima. Father’s passion for welcoming children to Adoration and the spiritual life has been fostered over the last decade and a half, and many fruits are coming from it. Please join us, and after listening to the show, you can find more information at http://www.childrenoftheeucharist.org/#.
Father Kuhn is the pastor of two parishes, St. Anne in Wadena, MN, and St. John in Blufton, MN. We have just passed the Feast of Pope St. John Paul II on October 22. Fr. Kuhn was at the North American College at Seminary in Rome from 2003 to 2007, and he was able to meet JPII twice during that time, and spoke of the awe of the meeting him, but also the sense of meeting a family member. We spoke about the influences of JPII on Fr. Kuhn’s priesthood, being there at the death of JPII, and that moment being crystallized in our collective memory.
Today Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers joined us for an abbreviated program. He is known as the Dynamic Deacon and recently wrote the book, Behold the Man: A Catholic Vision of Male Spirituality. The book is not just for men, it is a great book for women, and we even spoke about it for young men and women as they seek their spouse. What a powerful messenger Deacon Harold is!
Nancy Brown is a contributor to Gilbert Magazine, an author, and has just written The Woman who was Chesterton, a book about the wife of Gilbert Keith Chesterton, Frances. Although many know the English author G.K. Chesterton, few know about Frances, who is an author and poet in her own right. Nancy is the world’s foremost expert on Frances. There is a new world of wonder as you discover Frances!
Kevin O’Brien has another amazing story of conversion. He was an atheist as a pre-teen, became an actor, and through performing on stage eventually came home to the Catholic Church. Kevin speaks about spiritual darkness and uses G.K. Chesterton, and Orestes Brownson, both converts to the Catholic Church, to help us see our way through the darkness, in to the light, to communion with God. It is an episode filled with hope! You may find Kevin at www.theateroftheword.blogspot.com.
Joseph Pearce is Writer-in-Residence and Director of the Center for Faith and Culture at Aquinas College in Nashville, TN. He is also the co-editor of the St. Austin Review. This is our second visit from Joseph Pearce; today he is speaking to us about his book The Unmasking of Oscar Wilde. For many of us, we have a caricature of Oscar Wilde in our heads, and it is often unflattering. However, few biographers tackle Wilde as Pearce does. You will meet Wilde in a new way, from the beginning of his life, right to his deathbed conversion to the Catholic Church!
Every now and then you just need a dose of hope! We invited Dale Ahlquist on to help us out. Dale is the president of the American Chesterton Society, the co-founder of the Chesterton Academy, a writer, speaker, and the world’s foremost expert on G.K. Chesterton. We spoke about Chesterton and his incredible gift of offering hope to a world in turmoil. His timeless truths are just as astonishing today – all of them leading us to the Church and to Christ. What an hour of joy! And thank you for the amazing gift of hope through the hour and right to the end. If you would like to find out more about Dale Ahlquist, you can find him at www.chesterton.org.
Today we were joined by Deacon Kyle Kowalczyk of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. Deacon Kowalczyk is entering his final year at the seminary, and, God willing, will be ordained a priest in May 2016. This past week I joined the good Deacon, our Pastor, three other chaperones, and 31 teenaged girls on a Nun Run. We traveled in one bus for one week, going to eight different convents across the Midwest in seven days. It may sound like folly, but it was supernaturally beautiful. For many of the young ladies, this was their first introduction to religious sisters, they were overcome with the joy that they witnessed in the sisters. Then, the Holy Spirit had a few surprises for all the adults. Listen to the stories of our teenagers; their discoveries may be ones that your own teenager is looking for.
Kelly Wahlquist is an evangelist, author, speaker, founder of W.I.N.E.: Women in the New Evangelization, and assistant director of the Archbishop Harry J. Flynn Catechetical Institute. We were spoke about her first book Created to Relate: God’s Design for Peace and Joy. It is an amazing read – and great for small groups with its built in study guide. After listening to the show, you will want Kelly to come to your neck of the woods. You can contact her at www.kellywahlquist.com.
Dr. Catherine A. Deavel joined us today. She is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN. Providentially, she was my first professor of philosophy, and among many things, introducing me to Humanae Vitae. Dr. Deavel has a really remarkable gift in teaching young college students. We spoke about the college student of today, how “feeling” has taken pride of place over “thinking” in society, and her work to acquaint her students with the great thinkers in the Church, thereby giving the students a freedom to think as well. Specifically, we spoke about how this translates into obligations to family, and the very pressing issue of euthanasia. Dr. Deavel was illuminating!
What a great joy to have had Sheila Liaugminas join us today! She is an Emmy Award winning journalist, the host of “A Closer Look” on Relevant Radio, and the author of Non-Negotiable: Essential Principles of a Just Society and Humane Culture. Sheila has a passion for charitably addressing ethical questions that present themselves in society. She began by telling us how this passion took hold when she was a little girl, and has become her life’s work. Our conversation centered on some of the non-negotiable teachings of the Church, especially abortion in light of the recent exposé videos, and marriage in light of the recent Supreme Court ruling. And, as Sheila always does, she left us with hope! After listening to the program, you can find Sheila on her blog www.inforumblog.com.
Intellectual, character, and spiritual formation of teenagers is of the utmost importance. Cameron Thompson, the Dean of Student Life at the Chesterton Academy in Edina, MN joined us to speak about the House System at the Academy. Teens are becoming leaders, being strengthened in virtue, and finding amazing ways to rise to challenges not often presented to them. You can find out more about Mr. Thompson through his book, The Handbook of Human Formation: A Resource for the Cultivation of Character, and at www.chestertonacademy.org.
Dr. David Deavel joined us to speak about C.S. Lewis, his life and writings, his deep faith and conversion to Christianity, and how reading Lewis helped to lead to Deavel’s conversion. In addition, there is much to learn from Lewis for the situations we find ourselves in today. Deavel is a Catholic Theologian, Adjunct Professor of Catholic Studies at the University of St. Thomas, the associate editor for Logos magazine, and the 2013 Acton Institute Novak Award winner.
It’s never too late for St. Thomas More! Although his feast day has passed this year, there is so much to learn from him. Join Dr. John Boyle as he takes us through the life of More, his friendship and work with Henry VIII, which later led to his martyrdom. Boyle adds so many levels to the story, we meet More as a young man, a family man, a professional, and as a man with an unshakeable foundation of Faith. Dr. Boyle is a professor of Catholic Studies and Theology at the University of St. Thomas, he is the director of the Masters in Catholic Studies program, and the director of the Rome program with Catholic Studies.
We are celebrating the Feast of Peter and Paul a day early, and to do so we’ve invited Jona Winkleman. She is the Pastoral Care Director at Holy Name of Jesus Parish in Wayzata, MN, previously was an assistant professor at DeSales University, has a Sacred Theological License in Dogmatic Theology from the Angelicum in Rome, and while in Rome she was an Official Guide for the Fabrica San Pietro at the Vatican, which is also known as the Scavi. The Scavi is the Necropolis beneath St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, and contains the bones of St. Peter. Jona takes us through the history of how St. Peter came to be there, the burial of his body, Constantine’s part in the story, and the finding and verification of the Peter’s bones in the 20th century. It is quite a story – with more than a few twists and turns, and even an amazing story of love that Peter had a part in just a few years ago. St. Peter – Pray for us!
It’s Father’s Day – so we spoke about one of the Father’s of the Church, St. Augustine. Dr. Erika Kidd, Assistant Professor of Catholic Studies at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, joined us. We spoke about Augustine, his father and mother, his young life, and his conversion and meeting with St. Ambrose. Dr. Kidd makes Augustine very accessible – his amazing life comes alive, and ties into our lives today.
It’s the 79th anniversary of G.K. Chesterton’s death, and to celebrate we spoke to Deacon Charles Hall. Chesterton played a major role in Deacon Chuck’s conversion to Catholicism. There are many facets to the story – even a very interesting take on his defense of Church teachings, even as a Protestant, during the priest scandal in the early 2000s. Once he converted, Deacon Chuck explains the surprise and journey of becoming a Catholic Deacon. After listening, you may find out more about Deacon Chuck at hallfolk.com.
What a wonderful time with our guest Stephen Ray! He recently released his DVD, The Footprints of God: Abraham, Father of Faith and Works. In the DVD series, Steve takes you to the Holy Land, and the lands of the Bible, which gives a new dimension to Salvation History. Today we spoke about Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Rebekah, and so many others – and how they foreshadow others in the New Testament. After listening, you can find Steve at www.catholicconvert.com.
Today two pro-life giants joined us. Roxane B. Salonen helped to write Redeemed by Grace: A Catholic Woman’s Journey to Planned Parenthood and Back with Ramona Trevino. The story of how the two of them met is full of the influence of the Holy Spirit! We also had Lauren Murzyka with us. She wrote the foreword to Redeemed by Grace, she was a campaign strategist the 40 Days for Life National Team, and is currently the executive director for Sidewalk Advocates for Life. It was a great joy to come together to speak again about the amazing mission of life!
What a joy to have had Dale Ahlquist join us again! Dale is the president of the American Chesterton Society, Host of EWTN’s Apostle of Common Sense, co-founder of the Chesterton Academy, author, and scholar of G.K. Chesterton. Today was a good day to speak about conversions to the Catholic Church – and so we spoke about Chesterton’s conversion, and then those of Dale, and 400 plus others. In addition, Chesterton has been an influence in very many vocations to the religious life. And speaking about religious life – why not talk about Chesterton and the Popes! And, because Chesterton was such a big man – we covered many other things. After listening, you can find out more about Dale Ahlquist and G.K. Chesterton at chesterton.org.
Father Robert Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D., joins us today. Fr. Spitzer is the former president of Gonzaga University, the founder of the Magis Institute, the chief education officer of the Ethics and Performance Institute, and President of the Spitzer Center of Ethical Leadership. Today he speaks about his new book Finding True Happiness: Satisfying our Restless Hearts. The book is masterful! After listening, you can find the book at your local Catholic bookstore, or www.ignatius.com.
Margarett A. Schlientz, Ph.D. is my guest. She has an amazing background, which includes degrees in theology, spirituality, and psychiatric nursing. She is the Assistant Director at the Institute for Priestly Formation at Creighton University, and she chairs the Conference on Deliverance and Exorcism annually at Mundelein Seminary. We spoke about woundedness, healing, mercy, and a host of other topics. Margarett’s insights are beautiful! After listening, you may find her at maschlientz.com.
We are in Rome again, this time with Dr. Elizabeth Lev, art historian, professor, author, storyteller, and amazing tour guide through the Eternal City. Find out how Dr. Lev came to love art through book reports as a child. And then join us, especially as we see Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel ceiling and The Last Judgment with new eyes. Liz has a gift for imparting wonder in the Church. After listening, you can find Liz at elizabeth-lev.com.
In the Year of Consecrated Life we were able to speak to Sister Emanuela of the Missionaries of Divine Revelation, which is a newer order. Sister spoke about an apparition of Mary that took place in Rome in 1947. Pope Saint John Paul II named the grotto of the apparition, Holy Mary of Third Millennium at Three Fountains. We followed Sister’s vocation story from a life as an executive in England at a very young age; her career had an amazing trajectory. However, teaching a Monday evening adult catechesis class was what fulfilled her. Join us for a wonderful story of God’s providence!
Today we had two guests joined us. Anthony Ryan shared a new book by Abbot Jean Charles Nault, O.S.B., The Noonday Devil: Acedia, the Unnamed Evil of Our Times. It is a fascinating book, and Anthony does a wonderful job explaining the real meaning of acedia, why it is important to know of it today, and how to counteract it in our lives. The book is available at Ignatius.com, and your local Catholic bookstores.
Brent Forrest joined us from San Antonio, Texas. Brent’s article, All Roads Lead to Rome-and None of Them are Smooth, appeared in Gilbert Magazine March/April 2013. It is a great look at God’s providence, His care, and the Eternal City that is full of stone that has been pressed into the service of God. We spoke of his conversion, and the annual American Chesterton Society Conference that will be held in San Antonio, TX this August. For more information, go to www.chesterton.org.
It’s Divine Mercy Sunday and our guest, Msgr. James Shea, president of the University of Mary, shared a beautiful story of Mercy that he was a part of a decade ago at the death of Pope Saint John Paul II. We spoke about JPII’s lasting message of hope as we enter the new millennium. This hope is alive and well at the University of Mary in Bismarck, ND, and on its satellites in both Rome and Peru, as well as those in the States. After listening to Msgr. Shea, you may well want to go to U-Mary, or send your kids. You can find them at cometomary.com.
Christ is Risen!
Father John Paul Erickson, Director of the Office of Worship for the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, joined us for Easter. We spoke about the Holy Week and Easter liturgies, and how to sustain the celebration all 50 days of Easter. In the second half hour, Sister Marie Kolbe of the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity of Manitowoc, WI joined us. We spoke about having been in St. Peter’s Square a decade ago for death of Pope Saint John Paul II, and being together the next day at Divine Mercy Sunday Mass in the Square. It was an amazing time. We also spoke of Easter joy, and how in this year of Consecrated Life the Sisters will live this out.
Blessed Palm Sunday! Today Father Aaron Kuhn, pastor of St. Ann in Wadena, MN, and St. John in Bluffton, MN joined us. Our conversation encompassed the great joy that begins the Palm Sunday Mass, and then the swift movement to the sorrow of the Passion narrative. We spoke about the many transitions from Palm Sunday through the Triduum; Father spoke about the vantage point of the priest, the participation of the faithful, and the understanding of the embodied soul as it pertains to Holy Week. He spoke of being a part of the whole Salvation Story, giving us great advice – take it all personally! And – be “all in” for Christ!
What a great gift to have had Ramona Treviño with us to speak about her new book Redeemed by Grace: A Catholic Woman’s Journey to Planned Parenthood and Back. Ramona spoke about her very young life with it troubles and joys brought her to “helping” women at Planned Parenthood. One of the things that was so pivotal in her conversion was listening to Catholic Radio while driving to and from the clinic. It was there that she began to understand that contraception and abortion are connected, and how they are both wrong. It is an amazing coming home story!
Today John DeJak joined us again for part two of our discussion of Fr. Walter J. Ciszek, S.J., and his Cause for Sainthood. John DeJak is the Headmaster of Holy Spirit Academy in Monticello, MN, he is the president of the Bellarmine Forum, and is a researcher for the Cause of Ciszek. He helped to edit the upcoming book With God in America: Selections from the Writings of Fr. Walter J. Ciszek, S.J. Our conversation included a recap of Ciszek’s imprisonment in the Soviet Union, and then a discussion of his life upon his return to the United States. To listen to part one of this interview, please listen to the January 11, 2015 podcast. You can find out more on Facebook at Fr. Walter J. Ciszek, S.J., or at ciszek.org.
Today’s program was a tribute to the late Prof. Charles E. Rice of the Notre Dame Law School who died February 25, 2015. He was known for his staunch defense and articulation of the natural law, and the teachings of the Catholic Church. He was a giant in the pro-life movement, being referred to as the happy warrior. My guests on the program were: Dr. Michael Kenney, Vice President for Planning and Enrollment Management at Madonna University; Professor Elizabeth Kirk, Resident Fellow in Cultural and Legal Studies at Ave Maria School of Law; and John Manos, General Counsel for EWTN. They were all students of Prof. Rice, and then maintained personal and professional relationships with him. They have given remarkable insight in to Charlie Rice; he was joyful, approachable, brilliant, humble, he called us to “work harder” for life, and to remember that we win in the end. Godspeed Charlie Rice!
Today Deacon Robert Ovies joined us. He is the author of the novel, The Rising, which is an amazing page-turner in which a nine-year-old boy has the ability to resurrect people. You will stay awake a few nights while reading this utterly Catholic story. You can find study questions for the book on the-rising.homestead.com. We also spoke about the Couple’s Prayer Series, which teaches married couples to pray with each other. After listening to the show, you can find out more information at www.coupleprayer.org.
How to Win a Catholic – this was the course that our guest Barbara Heil took years ago; she even got a certificate for it! Barbara grew up without knowledge of Christ and His Church. In college, she had a life-changing experience with Him, which eventually led her to being a Protestant minister for 25 years. Along the way, she discovered Teresa of Avila, other Doctors of the Church, and the Church Fathers. This led her to the Archbishop Harry J. Flynn Catechetical Institute, where the very first Catholic invited her to become Catholic. And she did! Barbara entered the Catholic Church in 2013. Her story is full of surprises, and wonder. After listening to the podcast, you can find Barbara Heil at www.fromhisheart.com.