Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Sunday, October 15, 2006

A Treasure Chest of Catholic Programs...

One of the greatest treasures that we have in the area of religious education and spirituality is the Eternal Word Television Network. Formed twenty-five years ago by a humble nun, Mother Angelica, it has helped countless Catholics and non-Catholics to understand the faith. Moreover, it has been an important source for prayer and growth in one's spiritual life.

EWTN spans the globe with quality Catholic programming via cable TV, local and short wave radio, and through streaming audio and video via the Internet, with programming for children as well as for adults. There is an informative and beautiful program called The Journey Home. It is about non-Catholics, and Catholics too, who have discovered what the faith really means; sometimes even those who have received a Catholic education are misinformed about what the Church in fact teaches. There is The Donut Man, an entertaining program that leads children to God. There are programs of prayer throughout the day, particularly the Daily Mass, the Rosary, the Stations of the Cross, and the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. These times of prayer are helpful to all, but especially to shut-ins who are not able to get to Church. We can watch informative shows like The Seven Sacraments, Pope Fiction, and Catholicism on Campus. For inspiration we might view Super Saints, which depicts the lives of the Saints, people like us who give us good examples of living in union with God. There are many other programs worthy of our attention.

Nothing can beat having the Bible and The Catholic Catechism in one's home. However, EWTN is an important source for authentic learning and inspiration. To see what will be on at any hour of any day, go to EWTN and click on Television. We are fortunate to have it 24/7 on our cable system. EWTN’s programming is also available 24/7 as live streaming video through the network’s web site,, along with a vast library of previously recorded programs. Their radio programming is also available via the computer at any hour, anywhere in the world.

If someone does not have it all the time on his or her cable, it is well worth the effort to ask for it. When I was in another parish, the cable system did not carry it at all, in spite of repeated petitions by parishioners. The rectory then subscribed to a satellite system just for the sake of getting EWTN. As far as I know, only one satellite cable provider carries EWTN, and that is called The DISH Network. This is a possibility for those who prefer to watch on their television but cannot get this programming from the local cable provider.

Even with decent television programs, we can get into the habit of watching the same old stuff; only the characters and circumstances change somewhat. But, with EWTN there is something more: programming that will form us in our faith, enrich our lives, and make us holy.

Fr. Stanley