Watch out, Detroit! There’s a sassy new kid on the Catholic block!
This Sunday, the First Sunday of Advent, the Archdiocese of Detroit will switch its network affiliation and will begin carrying the programming of CatholicTV out of Boston. The oldest Catholic television channel in the world, CatholicTV offers faith-filled, family-friendly programming 24 hours a day.
Since 1987, CTND (the Catholic Television Network of Detroit) has carried programming from the Eternal Word Broadcasting Network. And while Detroit-area Catholics have certainly appreciated EWTN’s strong Catholic voice and their thorough and dignified coverage of Church news, in recent years cable carriers have typically offered not one but two Catholic stations, EWTN and CTND, both with the same programming. The Archdiocese’s switch to the CatholicTV feed means that there will be two different Catholic networks in our area, each with its distinct personality.
Regular CTND viewers have already had a taste of Boston television—CatholicTV’s daily Mass, for example, has been well received in Detroit (my mother-in-law is a dedicated viewer). But I’m pretty sure that the wealth of new robust, high-energy programming is going to be a happy surprise.
Among the unique offerings on CatholicTV are:
- This Is the Day, the flagship talk show with hosts Fr. Robert Reed and Jay Fadden. [Full disclosure: I visited the set of the show last July, when Jay and Fr. Reed interviewed Guest House president Denise Bertin-Epp. The staff made us feel most welcome, and I’ve enjoyed the opportunity to get to know the ubiquitous Bonnie Rodgers, the station’s programming and marketing chief.]
- The magazine show ClearVoice, featuring news and features as well as reports from Rome and the Holy Land, presented by hosts John Monahan and Christine Caswell.
- Going My Way, CatholicTV’s answer to the Merv Griffin show, featuring the musical talents of Fathers Chris Hickey and Paul Rouse.
- WOW: The CatholicTV Challenge. This show is a high-energy Catholic version of “Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader”—except that the contestants are third-graders. Lots of fun for all!
- Catholic liturgies from Notre Dame, Boston, San Antonio, and Washington DC, as well as special papal masses and other events around theU.S.
- Spotlight, movie reviews from a Catholic perspective by Fathers Bill Kelly and Chip Hines.
- We’ve Got to Talk, the longest-running original CatholicTV series with host Fr. Dan O’Connell.
- Waypoints in Church History, an educational program with Dr. Ann Orlando, professor of patristics and Church history at St. John Seminary.
- One Billion Stories, a new and original series highlighting personal stories videotaped by recent college grad Seth DeMoor on his bike trip across America.
- House+Home, a reality-style series where Catholic families of all varieties, sizes and of different dioceses welcome you in their own living space. With host Father Robert Reed, you can discover how real people with the bricks and mortar of Faith, Hope and Love make their house, condo or apartment into a place where Christ is present. [Over the Thanksgiving weekend, I happened to catch an exciting special edition: an inside glimpse into Pope Benedict’s private residence inside the walls of the Vatican. If you missed it, check it out at www.VisitthePope.com.]
- Into the Deep with the insights of Bishop Richard Malone of the Diocese of Portland-in-Maine.
- And a new pilot for the first Catholic sitcom, Mass Confusion, with popular personalities Greg and Jennifer Willits, co-hosts of The Catholics Next Door, and Mac and Katherine Barron from Catholics in a Small Town.
There’s more—offerings for every age group, with lots of graphics and light-hearted laughter. I think you’re going to like it. Really.
If you really can’t wait, or if you’re not in an area that gets CatholicTV’s innovative programming, check them out on-line at www.catholictv.com.