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Kresta in the Afternoon – February 11, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on February 11, 2015

4:20 – The Slave Across the Street

The sex slave trade is a horror that isn’t confined to the slums of a third-world country. It’s an epidemic that extends to the suburbs of Middle America. Theresa Flores has experienced this horror firsthand. To her friends she seemed like a normal teenager. Unbeknownst to anyone, she was enslaved by an underground ring and endured more as a child than most of us do in a lifetime. Theresa joins us today with advice and insights on how to fight this horrible crime.

5:00 – Against All Odds: Bella Santorum’s Gift to the World

Rick and Karen Santorum’s eighth child was born with Trisomy 18, also known as Edwards syndrome, an extremely dangerous genetic disorder. Only 10% of babies with this syndrome survive birth; of the children who do survive, 90% die within their first year. Bella Santorum is one of the survivors. She has overcome numerous scares and has brought joy and inspiration to the world. Rick and Karen are with us to talk about the daughter’s journey.

Pope Francis and Spanking: 4 Things to Consider – Dr. Greg Popcak

People know that, as a Catholic Parenting author and family therapist, I encourage parents to eschew corporal punishment in favor of more effective methods discipline that are more respectful of the dignity of the parent and the child.   As a result, I’ve been getting emails all week from people about Pope Francis’ recent comments which are being touted in the press as a ringing endorsement of spanking.  Before we all get our wimples in a knot, here are a few things to keep in mind.

1.  What did Pope Francis really say?

As usual, when the press reports that Pope Francis said something, we have to look at the context of what he actually said. With Pope Francis, context is everything.  He tends to not make global pronouncement like St John Paul the Great or Pope Benedict XVI.  He is very much a man who is in the here and now, addressing things in a very off the cuff manner.  He expects his audience make the effort to “get” the context of his comments.  Personally,  I think that’s optimistic, but that’s his style and you can’t understand what he means unless you take his style into account.

If you read the actual address–and I encourage you to do so rather than taking the press’ word for it as it’s short enough–the entire talk is about the importance of present, merciful, loving fathers, who aren’t afraid to involve themselves intimately in their wife and children’s lives, lead their families, and discipline their children with love and firmness in a manner that is respectful of their dignity as persons.  Here are the paragraphs leading up to the bit that’s getting all the press.

The first need, then, is precisely this: that a father be present in the family. That he be close to his wife, to share everything, joy and sorrow, hope and hardship. And that he be close to his children as they grow: when they play and when they strive, when they are carefree and when they are distressed, when they are talkative and when they are silent, when they are daring and when they are afraid, when they take a wrong step and when they find their path again; a father who is always present. To say “present” is not to say “controlling”! Fathers who are too controlling cancel out their children, they don’t let them develop.

The Gospel speaks to us about the exemplarity of the Father who is in Heaven — who alone, Jesus says, can be truly called the “good Father” (cf. Mk 10:18). Everyone knows that extraordinary parable of the “prodigal son”, or better yet of the “merciful father”, which we find in the Gospel of Luke in chapter 15 (cf. 15:11-32). What dignity and what tenderness there is in the expectation of that father, who stands at the door of the house waiting for his son to return! Fathers must be patient. Often there is nothing else to do but wait; pray and wait with patience, gentleness, magnanimity and mercy.

A good father knows how to wait and knows how to forgive from the depths of his heart. Certainly, he also knows how to correct with firmness: he is not a weak father, submissive and sentimental. The father who knows how to correct without humiliating is the one who knows how to protect without sparing himself. 

And then he gives his example.  Personally, I don’t think it’s a great example of what he led up to say, but it’s an example and because I’m one of those people who will make the effort to get the context of his remarks, I take his meaning.  After all, as a public speaker, I too, have offered examples that fell flat or detracted from my actual point.  That said, I don’t think it is too much of a stretch to say that Pope Francis wasn’t really giving a speech about the awesome-y awesomeness of smacking your kids as long as you don’t leave visible marks–that’s COMPLETELY out of character for Pope Francis’ general positions on family life and completely inconsistent with both science and Catholic tradition on this matter (more on this below).  Rather, it is clear from the context of his remarks that he was speaking of the importance of dads not being afraid to step up and be dads; involved, loving, generous, engaged leaders of their families and formators of their children’s character and moral life.

2.  How Was He Speaking?

The second thing to keep in mind is how he was speaking–that is, in what capacity.  When he gave the example of the dad who sometimes has to “strike a child lightly” was he speaking as a theologian?  Well, it would not seem so, because he didn’t cite any scriptures, quotes from Vatican documents, or writings of the saints.  A theologian always builds from tradition.  Pope Francis didn’t do that.  He simply offered an example that he thought people could relate to illustrating the point he was trying to make in the three entire paragraphs before the example–three paragraphs, I might add, no one is talking about because his unfortunate example took center stage.  It happens, but when an example falls flat, which counts more?  The example?  Or the 3 paragraphs before it that carefully lays out everything you really meant?  Call me crazy, but I would go with what’s behind door #2, that is, the latter of the two options.

Well, if he wasn’t speaking as a theologian,  was he speaking as a social scientist?  Again, the answer appears to be “no.”  A social scientist also speaks from precedence–he cites research, he uses data. Pope Francis did none of  this.  So, clearly, he wasn’t intending to put forth some final, Catholic judgment on the raging debate in parenting circles and family psychology on the appropriateness and efficacy of corporal punishment.

So if, in giving this example, he was not speaking as a theologian or a social scientist, then what was he speaking as?  I would suggest that he was speaking as he often does, as a pastor, who was simply trying to illustrate his larger, main point in a way that his audience might relate to.  Again, I personally, think his example failed miserably, but it is a miscalculation that speakers often make.  The paragraphs before the example are really quite beautiful and lay out a powerful vision of fatherhood that does, incidentally, track with both Catholic theological tradition and social science.

3.  Discipline is a Matter of Prudential Judgment.

The third thing to keep in mind is that, for Catholics, parenting and discipline is a matter of prudential judgment.  Pope Francis wouldn’t tell people how to raise their kids because the Church doesn’t do that. it violates subsidiarity.   It’s up to parenting experts to state our case for the positions we take and for parents to listen, pray, and decide what makes the most sense to them.  I, and the overwhelming majority of my colleagues in family psychology, make the case that there are much more effective and dignified ways than corporal punishment to correct a child; methods that are also completely consistent with Pope Francis’ message of engaged, effective fatherhood.  That said, the vast majority of parents ignore that advice and still spank in spite of it.  Pope Francis knows this, and so he used an example of someone he felt spanked more mercifully than many other parents to underscore his point and give his message the broadest possible appeal.  Again, I think his example failed to serve his intentions, but that doesn’t change the point of his message; namely, dads should discipline, but only by using means that keep the dignity of the child in mind.  That point is quite clear and literally obvious from everything he says around the example he gave.

4.  What is the Larger Context of This Discussion?

Finally, we need to keep the larger context of this debate in mind.  Catholic theologians always respect the scientific findings that impact a particular subject when attempting to speak to that subject. The Vatican regularly asks scientists of every discipline to consult on various issues it has an interest in.  If Pope Francis were going to make anything more than a colloquial, folksy, comment on corporal punishment, he would need to consult both tradition and social science, both of which weigh very heavily against corporal punishment as an effective, respectful method of discipline.  For instance, here is a summary of the American Psychological Association’s finding on the research about corporal punishment.

Additionally, Pope Francis would need to consult the reflections of those holy men and women who have pronounced on this topic before him.  A while ago I posted an article on what the saints had to say about corporal punishment.  Here are some quotes pulled from that post.

~If thou shouldst see (your son) transgressing this law, punish him, now with a stern look, now with incisive, now with reproachful, words; at other times win him with gentleness and promises.   Have not recourse to blows and accustom him not to be trained by the rod; for if he feel it…, he will learn to despise it. And when he has learnt to despise it, he has reduced thy system to nought.  (St. John Chrysostum)

~The birch is used only out of bad temper and weakness for the birch is a servile punishment which degrades the soul even when it corrects, if it indeed corrects, for its usual effect is to burden (St Jean Baptiste de la Salle, c.f., On the Conduct of Christian Schools)

~Force, indeed, punishes guilt but does not heal the guilty….In the case of some boys, a reproachful look is more effective than a slap in the face would be. Praise of work well done and blame in the case of carelessness are already a great reward or punishment.  A reproachful or severe look often serves as an excellent means of moral restraint over the young. By it the guilty person is moved to consider his own fault, to feel ashamed, and finally to repent and turn over a new leaf.  Never, except in very extreme cases, expose the culprit publicly to shame. Except in very rare cases, corrections and punishments should be given privately and in the absence of companions; and the greatest prudence and patience should be used to bring the pupil to see his fault, with the aid of reason and religion.  To strike a child in any way…must be absolutely avoided…[these punishments] greatly irritate the child and degrade the [parent].  (St. John Bosco)


So, yes.  Pope Francis did, indeed, offer an example of parenting that, taken out of the larger context, appears to suggest that corporal punishment is just grand.  Putting it in context, however, it becomes quite clear that his example was just that, an attempt to illustrate a larger point, that unfortunately because of the press’ penchant for sound bites and the volatility of the debate among parents on this topic ended up obliterating the exact point about merciful, loving, engaged fatherhood he was trying to make.

For a thorough perspective on Catholic parenting that takes into account both social science and the fullness of our Catholic tradition, I invite you to pick up a copy of Parenting With Grace:  The Catholic Parents’ Guide to Raising (almost) Perfect Kids and Then Comes Baby:  The Catholic Guide to Surviving and Thriving in the First Three Years of Parenthood.

Read more: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/faithonthecouch/2015/02/pope-francis-and-spanking-4-things-to-consider/#ixzz3RH0K5vEF

Kresta in the Afternoon – February 9, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on February 9, 2015

4:00 – Kresta Comments: Was Chris Kyle Called or Driven?

Chris Kyle, the hero of American Sniper, survived four tours of duty in Iraq before setting up a gun range to help military veterans with PTSD. He was killed in 2013 by one of the people he was trying to help. Was Kyle’s life a response to a calling he heard to protect and help the innocent or was he simply driven to do something impossible? Al has some thoughts.

4:20 – Obama and the Crusades

On Friday we took calls about Obama’s ignorant and misleading claim that Christians shouldn’t be too quick to criticize terrorists because the Crusades were done in the name of Christ. We follow up on this topic with Steve Weidenkopf. Steve is an expert on Church history and has more reasons why there is no comparison between the Crusades and the ongoing scourge of ISIS.

4:40 – Death with Dignity is Eliminating the Suffering, not the Sufferer

Advocates of euthanasia, or “Death with Dignity,” say their cause is all about reducing the suffering of a sick person and their family. They argue that by allowing patients to die “on their own terms,” euthanasia eliminates the suffering of all involved. Wesley Smith disagrees. A true dignified death can be realized by eliminating the suffering, not the sufferer. He’s here to discuss how to do this.

5:00 – Brian Williams: When Exaggeration becomes Lying

NBC’s Brian Williams has decided to take a leave of absence from the network. Williams is facing harsh criticism for falsely claiming he was on a helicopter hit by an RPG in Iraq. In his apology Williams claimed that he was simply confused, since the incident happened more than ten years ago. Analysis of how his story has changed since the incident suggests otherwise. Al discusses the evolution of Williams’ story and what leads people in trusted positions to embellish their stories.

5:20 – The Best Lent Ever

Steve Lawson invites you to join Matthew Kelly and the Dynamic Catholic team on a life-changing journey through your Best Lent Ever. Participants in this special email course will receive weekly videos and inspiration that explain the genius of Catholicism to empower them to become the best version of themselves. Steve joins us to preview this program, which is sure to enrich your faith life and help you get the most out of your Lenten journey.

5:40 – Papal Smackdown! Did Pope Francis Recommend Spanking?

The latest Francis Frenzy in the media? His statement that it is permissible for parents to spank their children provided certain criteria are met. Some feel he is supporting proper discipline, while others say he is out and out endorsing child abuse. More2Life’s Dr. Greg Popcak joins us with some insights into what Francis really said and gives a Catholic viewpoint on spanking.

American Sniper is About Frustration

Anyone who thinks American Sniper justifies rage and vengeance hasn’t seen the movie. Anybody who thinks American Sniper is a simple God, country, family movie oozing patriotism and virtue hasn’t seen the movie.

American Sniper is about frustration. Everybody except the Kyle children live lives of frustration just east of, but unable to enter, contentment.

This movie is about the ultimate futility of war and the broken humanity of the warriors. In the film, nobody who is touched by the war is better off because of it. Not Kyle, his wife, his brother, his buddies, the servicemen at the Veterans Administration hospital. When I finished watching it, I thought of the John Paul II’s statement that “war always speaks the failure of humanity.” Yes, there are just wars and just actions within war but war is a result of human failure, sin. Catholics are called to be peacemakers. Sometimes that will require protecting the innocent through the use of lethal force. It is always tragic. We must guard against the temptation that promises solutions to enduring human problems through violence. The problems don’t get solved. They get pushed to another venue to be resolved later.

Nobody watching this movie confuses the glory and honor of battle with high-minded celebrations or the frivolous joy that accompanies your favorite teams whipping of your state rival. Glory, in the biblical sense, has nothing to do with the giddy froth of triumphalism. “Glory”, in this sense, must mean, as it does in the Old and New Testaments, weightiness, the moral significance of war. Like marriage, it is not to be entered into lightly. Marriage brings life. It is, dramatically speaking, a comedy. War brings death. It is, dramatically, a tragedy. Both require the turning over of our humanity to be transformed for good or ill by the experience, the story.

I believe this is the most believable and honest anti-war movies I’ve seen. It is about the human drama inside the warrior, not the justification of war. The heroism of Chris Kyle is never wallowed in. Nor is it regarded as an unalloyed good. He’s got “issues” as they say. He’s had “issues” all his life. He knows this and this keeps him from basking in the glitter of his “heroism.” He’s just doing his job. He’s just protecting his fellow soldiers rather than exporting high-minded principles. There are no lofty speeches about freedom or human dignity. The bad guys are savages but we aren’t too far removed from them.

God’s plan and sense of personal calling well established at the beginning of the movie runs silently and deeply throughout. In the end, however, Chris Kyle acts as though he is driven rather than called. He imagines he can protect every soldier out there and that is what eventually kills him in the end.


Kresta in the Afternoon – February 6, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on February 6, 2015

 4:00-6:00 Direct to My Desk: American Sniper, Brian Williams and Religious Violence

We’re opening the lines today to talk to you. Our topics will include the controversy surrounding the hit movie American Sniper, NBC’s Brian Williams’ false claim that he was in a helicopter hit by an RPG in Iraq and Obama’s claim that violence has been done in the name of Christ, so Christians must avoid chastising terrorists. We’re looking forward to hearing from you.

Kresta in the Afternoon – February 5, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on February 5, 2015

4:00 – National Prayer Breakfast Speakers include Mother Teresa, Ben Carson, Tony Blair and…Darrell Waltrip?

Attendees at this morning’s National Prayer Breakfast included President Obama and the Dalai Lama. Previous notable keynote speakers at this event have included Mother Teresa, who spoke harshly against abortion, and Ben Carson, who slammed the Affordable Care Act with President Obama sitting just a few feet away. This year’s speaker was something different: Darrell Waltrip, a three-time NASCAR champ. Al discusses the event and asks why Waltrip, of all people, was chosen to speak.

4:20 – The Grace of Yes

Beloved Catholic blogger Lisa Hendey explores eight spiritual virtues that she believes are foundational to the Christian life. In opening windows to pivotal moments of her own spiritual journey, she helps readers learn about belief, generativity, creativity, integrity, humility, vulnerability, saying no, and starting over, and shows how these virtues lead to generous living and the ability to joyously say yes to God. Hendey reflects candidly on real-life struggles: the identity adjustment of leaving a blossoming career to become a stay-at-home mom; the temptation of Divahood as her online celebrity grew; the freedom and opportunities of empty-nest status versus the middle-aged body’s pull to slow down; her encounters with spiritual community during treatment for cancer; and the contrast between the profound lingering grief she confronted at a Rwandan genocide memorial and the astounding willingness of survivors there to forgive. Readers encounter Hendey’s own struggles and successes while soaking up her characteristic warmth and good advice. Hendey provides questions for personal reflection and a prayer to close the exploration of each virtue. 

4:40 – Reactions to ISIS’ Latest Atrocities

ISIS’s graphic execution of a Jordanian pilot has been dubbed by some as a “tipping point” in the war. Jordan has responded with renewed vigor against the terrorist group, while the United Arab Emirates has withdrawn from the anti-ISIS coalition entirely. We talk with Raymond Ibrahim about how the Muslim world is responding to the latest developments.

5:00 – Obama: “US is a Beacon of Religious Liberty”…Just Ask Hobby Lobby

At today’s prayer breakfast, Obama emphasized the importance of religious freedom around the world and proudly proclaimed his commitment to its defense. What would the hundreds of religious organizations fighting the HHS mandate have to say about that? Al certainly has plenty of thoughts.

5:20 – Sr. John Dominic


5:40 – Random Stuff that Matters

We’ve gathered a large stack of tidbits from the news and culture and Al has a few quick thoughts on all of them. On this inaugural edition of “Stack of Stuff,” Al looks at a study of words spoken by women in the Bible, the money being paid to Conestoga Wood for their HHS Mandate victory, a Vatican report that allegedly says cosmetic surgery is a burqa made of flesh, a magazine cover proclaiming Tom Brady’s road to immortality and the news that Harper Lee is publishing a sequel to “To Kill a Mockingbird.”






















Audio Clips 2/5/15

  1. M Teresa NPB   2:25
    1. Speaking at the National Prayer Breakfast 2/3/1994
  2. Darrell Waltrip NPB :16
    1. Not a brain surgeon, not a politician, perfect guy
  3. Obama High Horse :25
  4. Obama Humility :40
  5. Obama Truth :56
  6. Obama Freedom 1:03

Kresta in the Afternoon – February 3, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on February 3, 2015

4:00-6:00 – Direct to My Desk

We’re opening up the phone lines for the full show today. We have a wide variety of topics we’d like to hear your thoughts on.

We have a list of five lies the culture tells us every day. We want to know if you think they’re accurate and if there are other lies for the list.

obama wheel of fortune

We also want to hear what happens when pro-life Democrats “grow up” and how far someone will go to make Obama look bad.

Our final question concerns why Obama isn’t calling Islamic terrorism by its real name, even when Egypt’s president is.

We want to hear your thoughts on all these topics as well as any other questions you may have. Call us at 877-573-7825. We’re looking forward to speaking with you!

Kresta in the Afternoon – February 2, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on February 2, 2015 

4:10 – Kresta Comments: Super Bowl Review

Sports fans across the nation are going to be talking about last night’s game for weeks, especially the controversial play call that led to one of the most dramatic endings in years. We’re here to discuss other aspects of the game. Malcolm Butler, the rookie cornerback whose incredible interception in the end zone won the game for his team, had some amazing comments after the game. He told NBC’s Michelle Tafoya that he “had a vision” he was going to make a big play and credited his faith for his success. Al has some thoughts on Butler’s comments. Also in this segment, we talk about some of the more memorable Super Bowl ads and the messages they did-or didn’t-get across.

4:20 – A Terrorist by Any Other Name

The White House has now issued multiple statements claiming that the Taliban is an “armed insurgency,” not a terrorist group. It classifies al-Qaeda and ISIS as terrorist groups but claims the Taliban falls under a different category while acknowledging the Taliban’s terrorist activities. Why would a group responsible for countless terror attacks be classified as anything but a terrorist group? On a related note, Al-Jazeera, a leading Arabic news network, has banned the words ‘terrorist,’ ‘Islamist’ and “Jihad’ from its airwaves. Al discusses why the world is so obstinate in its refusal to acknowledge terrorism for what it really is.

4:40 – Why Thomas Aquinas Still Matters

Last week was the feast of St. Thomas Aquinas. Although he’s been dead for nearly 800 years, Aquinas’ teachings still ring true in the modern world and are beginning to gain an even stronger following. We’ve asked Dr. Peter Kreeft to join us and explain why Thomas Aquinas still matters.

5:10 – Kresta Comments: Super Bowl Review

Al has more thoughts on Malcolm Butler’s interview and the most talked-about ads from last night’s game.

5:20 – 50 Shades of Wrong

50 Shades of Grey premiers in less than two weeks. The film aired a new trailer during the Super Bowl touting its popularity and asking if viewers were “curious.” We cannot stress enough how this story glorifies violence and abuse against women and is harmful to society. Dr. Miriam Grossman joins us with a medical professional’s viewpoint on what makes the story so dangerous.

5:40 – Kresta Comments: 50 Shades of Wrong & Classifying the Taliban

Al follows up our discussion with Dr. Grossman with his own thoughts on 50 Shades of Grey. How can we know the story is bad if we haven’t actually read it? Isn’t it just a movie? What’s all the fuss? He also has some closing thoughts on the White House’s comments on the Taliban and why so many people are reluctant to call out terrorism.

Kresta in the Afternoon – January 30, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 30, 2015 

4:00 – St. Odd: The End is His Beginning

In Dean Koontz’s latest novel, Odd Thomas is back where it all started . . . because the time has come to finish it. Since he left his simple life in the small town of Pico Mundo, California, his journey has taken him to places strange and wonderful, mysterious and terrifying. Across the land, in the company of mortals and spirits alike, he has known kindness and cruelty, felt love and loss, saved lives and taken them—as he’s borne witness to the greatest good and darkest evil humanity is capable of. Again and again, he has gone where he must and done what he had to do—for better or worse—with his courage and devotion sorely tested, and his soul forever changed. Every triumph has been hard won. Each sacrifice has taken its toll. Dean joins us to discuss his new book.

4:20 – College Ratings Plans and Free Tuition: Will This Punish Religious Colleges?

The Obama Administration has unveiled a ratings plan intended to punish colleges that raise tuition rates too quickly. This comes in conjunction with Obama’s plan to provide two free years of community college. Is this yet another example of government overreach? We ask Anne Hendershott about these plans and what they mean for religious colleges. 

4:40 – At my Funeral, Please do Not Say…

We’ve all thought about how we will be remembered after death. What will our tombstone say? What will people say in our eulogy? How will we be remembered in the years after our death? Fr. Pat Egan, chaplain of Ave Maria Radio, is here with a different question. What’s the one thing we don’t want said at our funeral? Fr. Pat’s answer may surprise you.

5:00 – Kresta Comments: Fifty Shades of Grey is now the Fastest-Selling R-Rated Movie in Fandago History

“Fifty Shades” isn’t due out until Valentine’s Day, but it has already sold thousands of tickets online. Why is this story so popular? Our culture abhors rape, beatings and sexual assault, so why are so many people infatuated with a story that revolves around these themes?

5:20 – In Defense of Christians

In Defense of Christians is an organization that works to promote awareness and advocacy of religious freedom and persecution around the world. IDC does not exclusively focus on Christians; it seeks to protect the human rights of people of all faiths, and even those who profess no faith at all. The rights are universal and applicable to all human persons. We speak with Joe Cella, a senior advisor for the IDC, about his organization.

5:40 – What did the Saints Say about Islam?

In his apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis said, “Faced with disconcerting episodes of violent fundamentalism, our respect for true followers of Islam should lead us to avoid hateful generalizations, for authentic Islam and the proper reading of the Koran are opposed to every form of violence.” The ongoing atrocities committed by ISIS, Boko Haram and other groups make this statement increasingly difficult to accept. What did the saints have to say about Islam and its teachings? Andrew Bieszad, an expert on Islamic relations, joins us with some examples.

Kresta in the Afternoon – January 29, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 29, 2015

4:00 – Catholic Schools Produce Better Citizens

We celebrate Catholic Schools Week by talking to Nicole Garnett. Nicole is the author of “Lost Classroom, Lost Community: Catholic Schools’ Importance in Urban America.” She details how Catholic schools promote the development of social capital—the social networks and mutual trust that form the foundation of safe and cohesive communities. She also demonstrates how the loss of Catholic schools triggers disorder, crime, and an overall decline in community cohesiveness.

4:20 – Kresta Comments: Is Julianne Moore her Own Creation? & Do Catholics Value Life More than God? 

Acclaimed actress Julianne Moore recently said that she doesn’t believe in God and that structure is imposed. “We impose order and narrative on everything in order to understand it. Otherwise, there’s nothing but chaos.” She also attributed her success to her ability to “be at the center of your own narrative and create your own life.” Would Moore feel this way if she weren’t a glamorous and successful actress? Al has some thoughts. Al also discusses the US Bishops’ recent statements on the death penalty as well as the significance of the death penalty’s inclusion in Mosaic law.

4:40 – Thomas Merton should have been a Franciscan

Saturday would have been the 100th birthday of Thomas Merton, also known as Fr. Louis. Merton’s autobiography, “The Seven Storey Mountain,” sent scores of readers flocking to monasteries and was included on National Review’s list of the 100 best non-fiction books of the 20th century. Merton was a Trappist monk, but within his teachings there is a distinct Franciscan influence. We speak with Dan Horan about why Merton should have been a Franciscan.

5:00 – The Church Rests on Peter

In the Book of Matthew, Jesus tells Peter, “You are rock, and on this rock I will build my Church.” Dr. Tim Gray is here to explain how St. Peter is the cornerstone of Catholicism.

5:20 – Kresta Comments: Is Julianne Moore her Own Creation? & Do Catholics Value Life More than God?

5:40 – Kevin Costner: “’Black or White’ is a Film Made for Our Time”

“Black or White” is the story of a grandfather who is suddenly left to care for his beloved granddaughter. When her paternal grandmother seeks custody, the little girl is torn between two families who love her deeply. Both families fight for what they feel is right and are soon forced to confront their true feelings about race, forgiveness and understanding. Star Kevin Costner joins us with his experiences from a story where nothing is as simple as black or white.


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