Guadalupe Radio Network marks two-year anniversary
February 10, 2015
HOUSTON — Remember the time when parents would relax on the couch while the kids laid on the floor to listen to their favorite radio program? In 2015, listeners of Guadalupe Radio Network (GRN), KSHJ 1430 AM, can still unwind to their favorite radio program — it just may be while sitting in traffic on U.S. 59 or during their lunch break on their earbuds. GRN will celebrate its two-year anniversary in a timeless medium that allows both Catholics and non-Catholics alike to hear the Good News.
The first day of the Conclave that elected Pope Francis, March 12, 2013, was the same day GRN went live in Houston. GRN is the only Catholic Christian perspective available 24/7 in English across the Metro-Houston area. General Manager Joe McClane said when the sun is in the sky, GRN broadcasts to a potential listening audience of more than six million people.
“The Catholic faith is alive and well in the nation’s fourth largest city,” McClane said. “We have incredible people, parishes, ministries and organizations. We have been able to network with many of them, sharing their passion for the faith and thus provide an opportunity for our listeners to plug in and get involved.”
With favorite shows like Rev. John Riccardo’s “Christ Is the Answer” at 9 a.m. Monday through Friday and “Catholic Answers” in the afternoon drive time, McClane regularly receives feedback from listeners who enjoy GRN immensely.
“It helps them to ‘see’ the bigger Catholic community outside of their parish and to feel more connected to the Church family as a whole,” he said. “We also have a lot of non-Catholic listeners who are being exposed to the Catholic faith for the first time. This has provided an opportunity at evangelization that was not available prior.”
Mother Angelica at Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) told the laity that if they would purchase and operate radio stations, she would provide the content free of charge. In July of 2000, the La Promesa Foundation purchased the first GRN radio station in Midland, Texas.
“The process was so difficult that we promised we would never do it again,” McClane said. “The Holy Spirit had other plans however, and made it clear to us that we were to move into others markets too.”
They now own or operate 21 stations across Texas, in Clayton, N.M., and Washington D.C.
“We have been blessed to establish Catholic radio stations in three Top 10 radio markets — Washington D.C., Dallas and Houston,” McClane said. “Until recently, there wasn’t a Catholic radio station in any major city in the U.S. We have felt called to establish a station in Houston for the last decade. Through the grace of God, providing the needed donations, we purchased KCOH and transitioned it to KSHJ — the Sacred Heart of Jesus.”
Using AM radio, which is more than 100 years old, McClane said the Lord is transforming lives through this medium every day. GRN live streams content over its Web site and through mobile apps. McClane’s show “Evangelium LIVE” airs every Monday from noon to 1 p.m. An upbeat, engaging and informative program, he promotes parishes, ministries and organizations. The station’s Facebook page, facebook.com/grnonline, has photos of all the guests too. Podcasts of the show can also be downloaded from iTunes at grnonline.com/Podcasts/Evanelium-on-KSHJ-Houston. Even though the station’s reach is extensive, McClane thinks connecting the Church is all about parish life.
“I will often tell pastors I meet, if I were to reach 100 percent of our potential listening audience, the reality is I cannot give a single one the Sacraments, I cannot form a single one in the faith or keep them active — only a parish can do that,” McClane said. “If I am to accomplish the work the Lord has given to us, then I need my audience to get involved at a parish near them.”
McClane has focused on working with parishes for the last two years and hopes to improve in the third year. He converted to Catholicism in 1999 in New Hampshire and was married, to his wife, Michelle, in 2000. Since then, his zeal for the Church led him to Catholic radio, to produce new media evangelization on GRN and to make sure that listeners understand the importance of connecting with a parish.
“I would love to have every single pastor come and share his parish community with us, then invite our listeners to come to Holy Mass there,” he said. “People are listening who need to hear the Lord beckoning them home.”
GRN is hosting its “Fishers Of Men” Benefit Dinner on April 21 at the Cathedral Centre, 1701 San Jacinto St. GRN will honor Daniel Cardinal DiNardo with a “Fishers of Men” award in Evangelization.
“We see ourselves as a tool at the service of the Cardinal and the Archdiocese, to assist him in his work of catechesis, evangelization and building up the Church,” McClane said. “Because of the diversity of our listening audience, it is an opportunity to always invite them to the parish and to get involved in the life of our family.”
Ready for year three, McClane wants to continue bringing parishes to the forefront. GRN runs free public service announcements for every parish in the diocese. If you are interested in having your parish on the radio, email McClane at email@example.com. For more about the Guadalupe Radio Network, visit www.grnonline.com.