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February 25, 2009
‘Catholics and the Culture War’ lecture to benefit local Catholic radio
By Roxanne King
To build awareness and raise money for programming, Colorado’s newest Catholic radio station is holding a benefit event 7 p.m. March 6 at St. Joan of Arc Church in Arvada.
Featuring remarks by Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., and a keynote presentation by Catholic apologist Tim Staples on “Catholics and the Culture War,” the Loveland/Denver station KPIO 1570-AM—it debuted in September on the feast day of St. Padre Pio—wants to give the faithful a taste of what they can hear on Catholic radio.
KPIO is an affiliate of the EWTN Global Catholic Radio Network and offers EWTN programming, which includes everything from Scripture study and lives of the saints to Catholic world news, apologetics and prayer. It doesn’t offer much music, but the owner says that’s not what it’s about.
“The mission of Catholic radio is to save souls,” said Jim O’Laughlin, president and founder of the Catholic Radio Network, the apostolate that owns the station. “People will listen and their faith life will deepen and they’ll become stronger spiritually.”
Staples, a former Pentecostal youth minister, is a convert to the Catholic faith. His talk will focus on the Catholic responsibility to effect change in the culture in which we live and will offer practical tips on how one can do that.
“Tim converted to Catholicism in 1988, spent six years in the seminary in Pennsylvania, then decided to be a layperson,” said O’Laughlin. “He’s married, is an ex-Marine, and is really entertaining.”
Staples is an apologist for “Catholic Answers Live,” a two-hour, daily, call-in radio program that is carried on KPIO through EWTN radio programming.
“Probably the two most popular shows on Catholic radio are ‘Catholic Answers,’ which airs 4 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday—it’s the most popular—and ‘The Doctor is In’ with Dr. Ray Guarendi, which airs 11 a.m. Monday through Friday,” O’Laughlin said.
O’Laughlin, a retired real estate developer, started his first Catholic radio station four years ago in Kansas City, Mo. Today, the Catholic Radio Network, which is headquartered in Kansas City, operates seven radio stations, counting two in Colorado. The apostolate’s aim is to spread the Gospel over the airwaves.
“Half of our listeners are not Catholic; a fourth are fallen-away Catholics,” O’Laughlin said. “We know because of call-in shows, where people identify themselves. Only about a fourth of our listeners go to Mass on Sunday. Catholic radio is a great way to bring people back to the Church.”
And it has a good success rate with converting non-Catholics, O’Laughlin said.
“Tim Staples tells how ‘Catholic Answers’ gets, on average, a call a day from a non-Catholic minister who is considering becoming a Catholic because of Catholic radio,” O’Laughlin said.
The upcoming benefit in Arvada is free, but donations will be accepted to help KPIO continue its mission of evangelization over the radio.
“Hopefully, listeners walk away with something that changes their life,” O’Laughlin said. “All the radio does is plant seeds.”
St. Joan of Arc Church is located at 12735 W. 58th Ave. The benefit will include appetizers and drinks. Reservations are required as space is limited. Call 303-523-9760 or 970-669-8000.