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Flannery O'Connor on the Air PDF Print E-mail
Written by Sherry   
Wednesday, 11 April 2007 05:36
Disciples with Microphones not only does a lot of pod-casting, they have their own blog. Michael Kreidler raises a really interesting question: the quality, or lack therefore, of the Catholic media in this country. Overall Kreidler gives it a solid "C".

Note: Kreidler does not hold to grade inflation where "fine" = a B. In Kreidler's grading scheme, average or "fine" is a C.

Kreidler on Catholic TV:

" EWTN? I am stepping into a quagmire here but I would say it is definately fine. I do not dispute that Mother brought the network about through blood sweat and tears and that God’s intervention allowed EWTN to be established and grow. I also admit that God has used the channel to bring about countless conversions. That is not my point. I assert the vast majority of the programming on EWTN is made up of talking heads. Sometimes the content is compelling and other times not."

Catholic terrestial radio?

"pretty bad. First of all, much of the programing is repurposed EWTN television. Hearing statements such as “as you can see…” on the radio is just terrible. Also, the broadcast of the Holy Mass on radio is just bad radio. . . So if EWTN on television is a ‘C’ then EWTN on radio is a ‘C-’. Beyond that, when local stations do original programming, it is again a duplication of the talking heads. Sometimes it is engaging, often boring.

The rise of some interesting programming is heartening, but the fact that no terrestrial station would pick it up speaks of a bigger problem. I suggest that the majority of terrestrial stations are afraid to take a chance on truly interesting shows. The fear seems to be not only the fear of making a bad programming choice, but a fear of saying or doing something wrong that is perceived to be ‘out of line with the Church’. These fears seem to drive all decisions in terrestrial radio. There is prudence and then there is fear. I see more fear than prudence. As a result we are left with pretty dull programming (with occasional notable exceptions). (Here Kreidler makes it clear that he is not referring to Relevant Radio since he hadn't heard enough to have an opinion.)

I am saying Catholic media is average, good, fine. Nothing necessarily wrong with it, but nothing that allows it to rise above the mediocre media that is in abundance in our world. The question we must answer is how will Catholic media move from ‘good’ to ‘GREAT’?"

Sherry: I have to agree. I seldom watch EWTN. In fact, haven't watched it since JP II's funeral. It's comes across as oddly evangelical in an old-fashioned way - endlessly earnest and exhorting. Can't comment on Catholic radio since I don't have access to it. My question: what would Flannery O'Conner do?

In any case, check out Disciples With Microphones.

But the whole discussion does remind me of another episode in the funny evangelical spoof on the MAC/PC ads.


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