November 30, 2007
Upcoming Programs
The Season of Advent
Welcome to the Advent season, the liturgical time of preparation for Christmas! Having a relatively short period of time—usually less than four full weeks—to “prepare” for Christmas puts Catholics a little out of step with the rest of American society. Thanksgiving weekend kicked off the Christmas shopping season, and we’re just beginning to prepare liturgically with the First Sunday of Advent this weekend. American Catholic Radio  is planning a line-up of Advent programming to “counter” our American culture’s approach to Christmas in a few different ways:
• To help us appreciate the scriptural and liturgical meaning behind Advent, Franciscan Father Tom Richstatter talks with John Feister in “Exploring Our Faith.” Father Tom is a theologian and teacher of liturgy, and he defines Advent as a time of “joyful expectation” in the Church.
• We’ll rescue our Christmas preparation from the shopping malls and corporate world by talking with Jeanne Hunt, the catechetical consultant for St. Anthony Messenger Press. Jeanne talks about Advent and some ways that your listeners can prepare for Christmas.
• To challenge the “millennial generation” to a spirit of generous service, we’ll  meet the Catholic “volunteers of the year,” a family of three Tucson-based dentists who’ve voluntarily treated patients at Catholic Community Services of Southern Arizona’s St. Elizabeth’s Clinic, where thousands of uninsured adults and children receive low-cost dental care.
• Among the Gospel stories we tell during Advent is the visit of Mary to her cousin Elizabeth. The two women, each carrying a child conceived through God’s special gift, support one another. Judy Zarick has found some modern-day “Elizabeths.” Jeannie Hannemann is the founder of Elizabeth Ministry, an international movement designed to support women and their families during the joys, trials and sorrows of the childbearing years. Its mission is to cherish children, encourage families and build community, through peer support, mentoring, spiritual nourishment, education and inspirational resources.
• In time for the feast of the Immaculate Conception, December 8, “Bible Break” scholar Father Daniel J. Harrington will explore the image of the “woman clothed with the sun” who we hear in the proclamation of the Book of Revelation. Who is she, and what does she mean for us? 
• An ancient “countercultural” image for Christmas comes from the saint who stands behind our secular icon of Christmas. In our “Saint of the Day” segment, we’ll meet the fourth-century bishop Nicholas who became “Santa Claus.”
All these features—and more—are intended to bring information and inspiration as lights during the Advent season to illuminate the way to Christmas for your listeners!  Peace and all good!
Fr. Greg Friedman, O.F.M.
American Catholic Radio: Upcoming Episodes (December 3, December 10)
Use the links below to preview the shows or download them in MP3 format for broadcast.
Highlights from this episode include:
Saint of the Day
St. Nicholas of Smyrna
Living Faith
Catholic Charities 2007 National Volunteers of the Year are a family of dentists who provide dental care to low-income families. Drs. Sam Marascalco, his son-in-law, Phil Mooberry, and Phil's son, Nick Mooberry, work with patients and help raise funds.
Ask a Franciscan
Why did Mary need to be redeemed? May a Catholic marry an unbaptized person in the Church? What does a vice chancellor do in a diocese?
Bible Break
“Woman” read by Father Daniel J. Harrington, S.J., from What Are We Hoping For? New Testament Images
Exploring Our Faith
Father Tom Richstatter talks about Advent.
Highlights from this episode include:
Saint of the Day
St. Maria Goretti
Living Faith
Elizabeth Ministries provides Christian mentoring and support for mothers as they experience the joys, challenges and sorrows of the childbearing years. Jeannie Hanneman talks about her role in the ministry and how it has impacted her own life.
Ask a Franciscan
Is there a difference between justice and vengeance? What is Church teaching on capital punishment? Must Catholics support labor unions?
Bible Break
“John the Baptist” written and read by Sister Barbara Leonhard, O.S.F.
Exploring Our Faith
Jeanne Hunt talks about celebrating Advent at home.
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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