Monday, October 26, 2009
Support a Catholic Speaker Month/Fr. Larry Richards
Matt Warner at Fallible Blogma has a great idea. He put up a list of over 100 Catholic Speakers and has been asking fellow bloggers to choose a Catholic Speaker with whom they were not very familiar, do a little research, perhaps send an email to the speaker, and then write up a post supporting your chosen speaker. According to Matt's post on the topic, "The goal is to create a rising Catholic tide on the internet that lifts all boats (websites, speakers, and all those who participate). This giant, sudden influx of catholic material and interlinking between Catholic websites should get some attention and raise awareness about all of these great Catholic speakers while also promoting the many wonderful Catholic blogs out there that perhaps you haven’t heard of yet either."
I can do that, I thought! I always love to meet new people, even (and sometimes especially) through the internet. So I chose Fr. Larry Richards, because although his name sounded vaguely familiar to me, I truly did not know him. I quickly googled his name to see what I could find. Lots of results, that's what I found! A hurried scan told me that two groups he especially likes to work with are men and teenagers. That second category intrigued me considering I have a few of those creatures called teenagers living in my house! So, I whipped out an email to Fr. Larry Richards asking him to please share a little bit of his story with me. Knowing that he must be incredibly busy, I wasn't sure if I should expect any kind of response, but within a few days, he did reply telling me what I already knew, that yes, he is very busy, currently promoting his new book "Be a Man", that just came out.
Not wanting to miss the deadline, I scooted back to the internet to see what else I could learn, and this time around, I lingered a bit longer and learned quite a lot!
"The Reason For Our Hope" is the name of Fr. Larry's website. The purpose and mission of his website and foundation is "in answer to 1 Peter 3:15: “Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope.” The purpose of The Reason For Our Hope Foundation is to fulfill the command of Christ to “go and make disciples of all nations” (Matt. 16:28). The mission of the Foundation is to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ and His Church through various multimedia resources and to make available Catholic speakers who are effective instruments of this evangelization. The Foundation also helps various charities that make real the Gospel of Jesus Christ."
Fr. Larry was ordained a priest in 1989 and is currently the pastor of St. Joseph Church/Bread of Life Community in Erie, Pennsylvania. He is also the founder and president of "The Reason For Our Hope", hosts a nightly radio program on Relevant Radio, has many CD's and tapes of his talks available, and can now add author to his list of accomplishments! Another google scan brought up many you-tube videos of his talks, and I can testify that he is well worth listening to! After a few short videos, I laughed, I cried and I wanted to rouse up my whole family and head out to confession! (Here's the link to his outstanding confession talk, it made for lots of healthy discussion in our household!) If he ever makes it back to Milwaukee to share his faith and wisdom here, I promise I will be first in line to buy a ticket!
I leave you with this very moving video and encourage you to support Fr. Larry Richards and The Reason For Our Hope Foundation.