Catholic Free Press

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  • Sep
  • 29

Emmanuel Radio gets bishop’s blessing

Posted By September 29, 2011 | 1:05 pm | Lead Story #2, Local
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By Margaret M. Russell

WORCESTER – “Catholic radio is a tremendous instrument in the evangelizing work of bringing Jesus Christ to others,” Bishop McManus said, invoking God’s blessing on the city’s newest radio station, Emmanuel Radio, during the opening of Mass Sunday morning in St. Paul Cathedral.
More than 100 supporters of Catholic radio in the Diocese of Worcester gathered with cathedral parishioners to express thanks to God for this “gift to the diocese” and to hear words of encouragement from the bishop, a Catholic college president and a Catholic media specialist.
The Mass, station blessing and reception for Emmanuel Radio, 1230 AM, comes five months after its first broadcast. Emmanuel is an EWTN affiliate and is located in the former St. Paul Cathedral school building. It is a project of Emmanuel Communications which was founded in 2008 by a small group of Catholics led by Raymond J. Lauring of Worcester. Mr. Lauring and his wife, Claire, were seated in the front pew of the cathedral.
After Mass, station manager Nick Everett led supporters to the garden across the street where Bishop McManus gave an invocation then toured and blessed the studios.
In his homily, Bishop McManus tied Sunday’s Gospel to the work of evangelization being carried out by the radio station. The Gospel (Mt 21:28-32 ) is the story of two sons whose father asked them to work in the vineyard. One son said that he would; but he didn’t. The other son said that he wouldn’t, but had a change of heart and went to do the work his father asked. Bishop McManus said the Gospel encourages us to ask ourselves which of the sons we are most like.
“Our life is filled with promises we are expected to fulfill. Often we fall short of the mark. We do not do what we profess to do. … In truth, faith without good works is dead. Good works are always a manifestation of this faith given to us. When faith is given to us we have the responsibility to share it,” he said.
Bishop McManus went on to talk about Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to his homeland of Germany. He said the Pope mourns Europe’s loss of the recognition of its Christian roots. He commented that a type of amnesia has descended over the people; a “severe secularization and tendency toward atheism.” It is what the Bishop called a practical atheism – “living their daily lives as if there is no God.”
The Pope’s call to Germany was to bring people back to embrace the faith and give them the task of the new evangelization – reintroducing people to the person of Christ.
Bishop McManus said, “Today I give thanks that here in the Diocese of Worcester we have Catholic radio, which I pray will be a vehicle for carrying on the new evangelization in our own time, in our own place, in these days of turmoil.
“So many Catholics are asked so many questions. People identify themselves as Catholic, but what they say about the church is profoundly embarrassing. They know so little about the faith.
“It is our responsibility to become those laborers who respond to the father’s question and go into the vineyard. And we need to express our faith and try to introduce Jesus Christ to as many people as we can.
“And when we stand before the judgment, one of the questions will be: What have you done to bring people closer to me?”
Emmanuel Communications and its founding trustees, Mr. Lauring, his son Mark A. Lauring and Michael Grimes, know well of the mission to be laborers in the vineyard. They wrote a mission statement that makes it clear that they will use the radio station “to proclaim the truth and joy of Jesus Christ, in accordance with the Magisterium of the Roman Catholic Church. We strive to be advocates of Christ’s love and a beacon of orthodoxy in the local Diocese and in the wider community of the Church.”
“Catholic radio helps us bring the Gospel to the world desperately in need of the Gospel,” Assumption College President Francesco Cesareo said at the reception in the Cenacle.  President Cesareo said he was pleased that the college is involved with the radio station through an internship program. “The work of this radio station is critical to reinvigorating Catholics,” he said.
President Cesareo also introduced the featured speaker, Scot Landry, Secretary for Catholic Media in the Archdiocese of Boston.
Catholic radio works, Mr. Landry said. Ten years ago there were seven Catholic radio stations, he said. Today, there are more than 180, many of which carry EWTN programming. Three days after Mr. Landry began his new job in the archdiocese, he was approached by Holy Family Radio looking to work in concert with the archdiocese. In the 10 months since WQOM, 1060 AM, has been in Boston, Mr. Landry said he has heard the most touching testimonials to its effects.
He called radio the most effective tool of evangelization. And, he said that Pope Paul VI calls evangelization “the church’s deepest identity. We exist in order to evangelize.”
“There are many hurting people in society. Through the power of radio we can reach those who wouldn’t think of going in to a church,” Mr. Landry said.
Emmanuel Radio’s broadcast can be heard throughout the city and surrounding towns. And it can also be heard online at www.1230radio.com from anywhere in the world. A mobile app is available for smart phones and iPads too, Mr. Landry noted.
He suggested ways for people to support the new radio station.
“Please listen,” he said.
Other suggestions include:
Set you car radio to 1230.
Ask your pastor to promote the station.
Work with catechetical leaders so they know about the station.
Put a bumper sticker on your car.
Support it with your financial gifts
And pray.
“Pray for all those who work on the radio station. And please pray for all those who listen,” Mr. Landry said.

– Mrs. Russell is a member of the radio station’s advisory board.

See photo gallery of the event at
http://bit.ly/p9YLEa