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The Deacon's Bench

The esteemed Fr. Robert Barron is about to stake his claim on that title, doing what no priest has done since Sheen: he’ll launch his own national TV show on a commercial network.

From the press release:

about_frBob.jpg In a bold move to reach Catholics and those searching for Christ in their lives, Father Robert Barron begins broadcasting a weekly national television program on October 3rd. “Word on Fire with Father Barron” will appear on WGN America Sundays at 8:30 am Central.

“Now is the time to reach out to Catholics and others who are searching for meaning in their lives or who have left the Church because they are disillusioned,” says Father Barron, a prominent theologian, author, and Archdiocesan priest of Chicago since 1986. “In each episode, our mission will be to encourage believers and bring the transformative power of the Gospel to the culture.”

This is a groundbreaking broadcast. Fr. Barron will become the first priest since Archbishop Fulton Sheen in the 1950s to have a regular, national program on a commercial television network. Barron is a professor at University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary and is one of the world’s most innovative teachers of Catholicism. His global media ministry called “Word on Fire” has a simple but revolutionary mission – to educate and engage the culture.

For the past two years, Barron has been producing a ten-part documentary series called “Catholicism”, journeying to 16 countries to tell the story of the Church. The release is set for next year, but Father Barron will preview some highlights of the series in his weekly broadcasts.

“The faith of the Church is our strength,” says Barron. “Our program will strive to show viewers the richness of the Catholic faith and how it is a treasure to be shared now and with future generations. The faith imbues our life with meaning and imparts to all a renewed sense of purpose.”

I confess: I’m a fan of the good padre’s, and we’ve had him as a guest a couple of times on “Currents.” I hope this show resonates with people and will be around for a long time. If anyone can make this work, he can. Good luck!

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