Mar. 30, 2011
Upcoming Programs
Letting Go of Self and Letting God In

In mid-March, I attended the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, where St. Anthony Messenger Press introduced a new parish/school resource about the changes in the translation of the Mass. Part of our promotion included a large screen where the DVD–with yours truly as speaker–played on a continuous loop. I joked with customers that this was my Lenten penance, listening to myself for hours at a time!

There is a connection between our Lenten fasting and our own ego, our sense of self. We call it "self-denial" to give up some food or other legitimate pleasure. First and foremost, such a decision allows God to work. We set aside our own desires and make more room for God. The ego in itself isn't bad–it's part of us, after all. But so often we can be caught up in trying to control the world around us, letting our desires dictate our actions, that we are really saying, "It's all about me!"

Lenten sacrifice derails such an attitude. In the space that's left, we can begin asking questions of ourselves and God. "Who am I?" and "Who is my God?" If we've substituted self for God, or turned some desire or pleasure into a "god," then the act of self-denial can become a symbolic letting go. In that moment, God can begin to show us our true self.

At the L.A. Congress, I managed to "tune out" my own voice and image, as I spoke with the visitors to our booth. But I know there are many places in life where I need to take the next step and let God in. Lent is a great time to begin a practice that must continue throughout life.

Father Greg Friedman, O.F.M.
American Catholic Radio: Upcoming Episodes (#11-15 , #11-16)
Use the links below to preview the shows or download them in MP3 format for broadcast.
Highlights from this episode include:

Living Faith
Judy Zarick interviews Deacon Alex Jones, who was once a Pentecostal preacher. He didn't enter the Catholic Church alone; he brought with him many members of his former congregation.

Ask a Franciscan
Franciscan Father Hilarion Kistner answers four questions about Scripture: 1) Is there a scriptural basis for praying in tongues?; 2) Does Jesus literally require that we leave family and friends to follow him?; 3) According to Catholics, who wrote the Old Testament?; and 4) What is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit?

Marriage Moment
Susan Hines-Brigger, assistant managing editor of St. Anthony Messenger, offers her commentary, "Weathering the Storm."

Exploring Our Faith
Franciscan Father Pat McCloskey of St. Anthony Messenger recently interviewed the Honorable Miguel H. Diaz. Since 2009, he’s served as the U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See--our country's ninth envoy to the Vatican, and the first Hispanic. Dr. Diaz was most recently professor of theology at St. John’s University and the College of Saint Benedict in Minnesota, and had previously taught religious studies and theology at Barry University, the University of Dayton and the University of Notre Dame, where he earned a doctorate in systematic theology. He is co-editor of On Being Human: U.S. Hispanic and Rahnerian Perspectives, which waspublished by Orbis and named "Best Book of the Year" by the Hispanic Theological Initiative at Princeton Theological Seminary. In this interview. Dr. Diaz speaks about the duties and responsibilities of being an ambassador and the relationship between the U.S. government and the Holy See.
Highlights from this episode include:

Living Faith
Judy Zarick talks with Gene Fadness from Boise, Idaho. A former Mormon, Gene found his way to the Catholic Church in 1999.

Ask a Franciscan
Franciscan Father Greg Friedman responds to listeners' feedback given via email and iTunes.

Marriage Moment
Susan Hines-Brigger, assistant managing editor of St. Anthony Messenger, offers her commentary, "The Need for Good Communication."

Exploring Our Faith
John Feister's guest is Janine Carreiro, executive director of Brockton Interfaith Community, a coalition of Catholic parishes, Protestant congregations, one synagogue and other groups, in Brockton, Massachusetts. In 2010, Ms. Carreiro was the recipient of the Cardinal Bernardin New Leadership Award, given annually to a young adult who demonstrates leadership in fighting poverty and injustice through community-based solutions. The daughter of immigrants from the Azores and a graduate of the University of Connecticut, Janine worked as a missioner in East Timor until civil war forced her to leave that country. As executive director of the Brockton Interfaith coalition, Ms. Carreiro has worked since 2008 on the issues of employment and home foreclosures. She speaks here about conversion and social justice.
 
 
Franciscan Radio
Link to audio features Saint of the Day, Sunday Soundbites, and American Catholic Radio.
American Catholic Radio
A weekly half-hour catechetical program, in the popular style of the Franciscans.
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