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Kresta in the Afternoon – January 28, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 28, 2015

4:00 – Tiny Blue Lines: Reclaiming your Life, Preparing for your Baby and Moving Forward with Faith in an Unplanned Pregnancy

When Chaunie Marie Brusie stared down at the pregnancy test her senior year of college and saw two tiny blue lines–a positive test–she knew the road forward would be filled with difficult decisions, but she rose to the challenge. Brusie graduated from college, got married, and became a labor and delivery nurse and vocal advocate for the millions of young women who experience unplanned pregnancies each year. In her debut book, Tiny Blue Lines, Brusie offers coaching to young women, reminding them that their plight is near to the heart of Mary and that there is healing to be found in such Catholic practices as the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Brusie provides lists, resources, humor, anecdotes, and spiritual inspiration to help women gracefully navigate this challenging terrain. Chaunie joins us today.

5:00 – Zealous: Following Jesus with Guidance from St. Paul

On Sunday we celebrated the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul. In honor of this feast we talk to Mark Hart, coauthor of Zealous: Following Jesus with Guidance from St. Paul. Mark gives us a contemporary look at the basics of spiritual life through the lens of St. Paul’s epistles. Mark takes us on a deeper dive into Scripture to find answers to our faith’s timeless questions and internalize what God’s truth means for us.

5:40 – My Personal Conversion Story

Okan Kulan, a Turkish tour guide who works with Steve Ray, joins us in studio all the way from Istanbul. Okan has just entered full communion with the Catholic Church. He tells us his conversion story.

Kresta in the Afternoon – January 26, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 23, 2015

4:00 – Kresta Comments: Does Saudi Arabia Matter? 

4:20 – The Ancient Path: Old Lessons from the Church Fathers for a New Life Today 

People often imagine that the Church Fathers looked like their icons and smelled of incense, heroic figures wrapped in fine liturgical vestments of silk and lace, engulfed in billows of smoke from their golden censers. Yet, truth be told, even in their writings they resemble more the tattered cloak of Jesus or the dusty sweat-soaked habits of the early Desert Fathers and Mothers. Theirs is an utterly incarnational spirituality. It is heaven-sent, but it moves forward with both feet on the ground of the earth. Author John Michael Talbot joins us with the story of how these men deeply influenced his spiritual, professional and personal life. Coming to the Christian faith as a young man during the turbulent 1960s, he soon grew a fond of the Church Fathers, including St. Ambrose, St. Jerome, St. Augustine and Gregory the Great and found guidance, reassurance and wisdom on his path to Jesus. He says, “The early Church Fathers represent the first rows built upon the foundation of the Apostles. And that sacred building project continues throughout history to our time today. But it rests on the Fathers. It depends on them.”

 5:00 – Kresta Comments: Why the US is Stuck with Saudi Arabia

The death of Saudi King Abdullah raises questions about the US’s future in that region. The US has always considered Saudi Arabia to be a strong ally, despite deplorable human rights violations in that country.  As the world continues to ally against ISIS and Yemen descends into chaos, Al discusses why the US is ‘stuck’ with Saudi Arabia.

5:20 – Why the New Evangelization Needs a Focus on Fathers 

So many problems in our society can be traced back to the lack of a solid father figure. Countless studies have shown that kids who grow up without a positive relationship with their dads are much more likely to drop out of school, be arrested, use drugs and experience other problems. Despite their importance, fathers are regularly mocked in our popular culture and advertisements. Steve Wood of Family Life Center International joins us to talk about the critical role of fathers in the New Evangelization.

Kresta in the Afternoon – January 23, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 23, 2015

4:00 – Kresta Comments: Trash Talking Obama


After Al’s commentaries on Obama’s State of the Union, he received some feedback criticizing him for acknowledging positive elements of the speech. After all, Obama is the most pro-choice and anti-religious freedom leader in our history. How could a serious Catholic have anything but disgust for anything Obama says? Al has some thoughts on how disagreeing with the president doesn’t always mean lambasting his every word.

4:20 – Uncle Al Capone

Al Capone has become an iconic symbol of the Prohibition era. Upon hearing his name, we instantly think of the St Valentine’s Day Massacre and Robert De Niro’s brilliant performance in The Untouchables. What was Capone really like? We’re here with his grand-niece, Deirdre Capone, with a behind-the-scenes look at one of the century’s most infamous gangsters.

4:40 – Feast of St. Marianne Cope

Canonized in 2012, St. Marianne Cope is an American saint who spent decades serving in the leper colonies of Moloka’i, Hawai’i. She is the patron saint of lepers, outcasts and AIDS patients. On her feast day, we talk with Matthew Bunson about her work with St. Damien of Moloka’i.

5:00 – SCOTUS Declines to Hear Case Involving the Seal of the Confessional

The Supreme Court has declined to reopen a case that would have required a Louisiana priest to break the seal of the confessional and testify in court. What does this decision say about the state of religious freedom? Why is the seal of the confessional so important? What would be the implications of forcing the priest to break this seal? We discuss these questions with Michael Dunnigan, an expert in both American and Canon law.

5:20 – Yemeni Government Collapses: Open Door for ISIS? 

Rebel fighters in Yemen have seized control of the presidential palace. President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and his government resigned en masse earlier this week. This poses a problem for the fight against ISIS; Hadi was allowing the US to fly over Yemen when conducting airstrikes, something that may not be allowed in the future. There are also fears that al-Qaeda fighters could take advantage of the chaos and seize control. We discuss the situation with Jim Phillips. 

Kresta in the Afternoon – 1/21/15

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 21, 2015

4:00 – Kresta Comments: Recapping the State of the Union

Al replays some of the highlights from last night’s State of the Union and offers his own comments and analysis. Included in the discussion is Obama’s quest for equal pay, his proposal for free community college and his assertion that climate change is the biggest threat to our future. Al also examines how Obama’s attitude and tone toward his opponents has changed since he took office.

4:20 – Poor Baby: A Child of the 60s Looks Back on Abortion

Heather King came of age during the ‘60’s and ‘70’s. She was always told that sleeping around would be empowering, that “choosing” would make me free, that there’d be no repercussions. What she was told is wrong.  She’s for life becuse she suffered in silence, guilt and sorrow for more than twenty years. Even women, who will talk about anything, don’t talk about abortion. Heater does, and that’s why she’s with us today. Because abortion is not a political issue; abortion is a mystical issue. Abortion is a matter of emotional and spiritual poverty, of what we inherit from our parents and what we pass on to our children, of what we absorb from a culture that is saturated with violence.

5:10 – Previewing the March for Life from DC

Ave Maria’s own Teresa Tomeo joins us from Washington, DC, where she is and thousands of others are preparing for tomorrow’s March for Life.

5:20 – Kresta Comments: Recapping the State of the Union (continued)

Kresta in the Afternoon – 1/20/15

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 20, 2015

4:00 – Kresta Comments: State of the Union—What it is and Why it Matters

Al previews tonight’s State of the Union address and also looks at the address’ history. Years ago the address was shown on four networks and attracted 46 million viewers. Last year it was shown on 13 networks and only attracted 33 million viewers. Why the decrease? Al also discusses how YouTube star Glozell is using her platform to promote the speech.

4:20 – God in a Brothel: An Undercover Journey into Sex Trafficking and Rescue

January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Protection Month. Major events like the Super Bowl and North American International Auto Show are tragically a hotbed for sex slavery, particularly involving young girls. We talk to Daniel Walker about his undercover investigations into sexual trafficking cases around the world.

5:10 – Does the Fourteenth Amendment Require a State to License a Marriage between Two People of the Same Sex?

The Supreme Court will begin hearing arguments concerning the legal definition of marriage this year. A decision is expected this summer. We ask The Supreme Court will begin hearing arguments concerning the legal definition of marriage this year. A decision is expected this summer. We ask Ryan Anderson if the 14th Amendment requires the State to recognize same-sex marriage and what he expects to hear from the Court.

5:20 – Then Comes Baby: The Catholic Guide to Surviving and Thriving in the First Three Years of Parenthood

Dr. Greg Popcak, co-host of Ave Maria Radio’s More2Life, joins us to discuss his new book. Dr. Popcak has advice on how new parents can handle the early years of raising a child. We’ll also get his thoughts on Pope Francis’ comment that Catholics shouldn’t “breed like rabbits.”

Kresta in the Afternoon – 1/19/15

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 19, 2015

4:00 –Behold Your Mother: A Biblical Defense of the Marian Doctrine

From the cross Jesus gave us his mother to be our mother, too: a singularly holy model, consoler, and intercessor for our spiritual journey. Yet most Protestants and too many Catholics don t understand the role that God wants her to play in our lives. In Behold Your Mother, Tim Staples takes us through the Church’s teachings about the Blessed Virgin Mary, showing their firm Scriptural and historical roots and dismantling the objections of those who mistakenly believe that Mary competes for the attention due Christ alone. Combining the best recent scholarship with a convert s in-depth knowledge of the arguments, Staples has assembled the most thorough and useful Marian apologetic you’ll find anywhere. Tim joins us to show how all the Marian doctrines are relevant and even essential to faith in Jesus. From her divine maternity to her perpetual virginity, from her Immaculate Conception to her Assumption, the Church’s core teachings about Mary are intertwined with the mysteries of Christ. In a word, Mary matters.

5:00 – Kresta Comments: The Legacy of Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” Speech
Al replays portions of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s most famous speech and discusses the lasting impact the speech has had on America and the world.

5:20 – The Dream: Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Speech that Inspired a Nation
Drew Hansen joins us with his analysis of Dr. King’s speech, including the many biblical and theological connections the speech contains.

5:40 – One Dream or Two? Justice in America and in the Thought of Martin Luther King, Jr
Nathan Schlueter is here with a critical historical, constitutional, and philosophical examination of Martin Luther King Jr’s understanding of justice—his “Dream”—from within the context of the American political tradition. He isolates elements of King’s larger vision for social justice—paying special attention to issues of racial discrimination, political economy, civil disobedience, and the relationship between politics and religion—situating those elements within historical, rhetorical, and political context.

Kresta in the Afternoon – 1/16/15

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 16, 2015

4:00 – TBA

4:20 – 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.

4:40 – 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 exterpt on Islamic relations, joins us with some examples.

5:00 – 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.

5:20 – 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.

5:40 – TBA 

Kresta in the Afternoon – January 15th, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 15, 2015

4:00 – Meditations on Vatican Art Angels

Open your heart to the presence of angels, God’s holy messengers and protectors. In Meditations on Vatican Art Angels, you can reflect on stunning depictions from the Vatican Museums and contemplate angelic encounters in Scripture. Following his acclaimed first book, Fr. Mark Haydu, international coordinator of the Patrons of the Arts of the Vatican Museums, serves once again as your spiritual guide for a breathtaking journey through time, meditation, and the Vatican art collections. Meditations on Vatican Art Angels offers you a deeper understanding of your own spiritual journey as you follow Fr. Haydu’s explanation of the battle between the fallen angels and the faithful angels and God sending His angels to watch over you. The book’s splendid reproductions of major works represent ancient through contemporary periods in art. Fr. Haydu is with us today to help us open our hearts to angels’ existence and their desire to keep you from harm and guide you to God.

5:00 – The Hobbit Party: The Vision of Freedom That Tolkien Got, and the West Forgot

Any fan of Middle Earth is aware of Tolkien’s hatred of tyranny. But not everyone understands that Tolkien was a zealous proponent of economic freedom and small government. At a time when the West is sliding into political, economic and moral bankruptcy, Jonathon Witt and Jay Richards show how Tolkien used his beloved novels to draw us a map to freedom. Jay joins us as we explore how Tolkien’s masterpiece was shaped by his passion for liberty and his vision of man and creation.

Kresta in the Afternoon – January 14th, 2015

Talking about the “Things That Matter Most” on January 14, 2015

4:00 – Life with Dignity

Euthanasia is becoming widely accepted and is often referred to under the more palatable pseudonym “Death with Dignity.” The idea is that it is somehow undignified or degrading to endure extended suffering from a fatal disease. Brittany Maynard’s death was hailed as a heroic example of “Death with Dignity.” Lizz Lovett, a mother of four living with incurable cancer, has a different view of things. In a short video called “Death with Dignity,” she proposes that suffering a disease is actually a heroic and noble act. Lizz joins us today to discuss how she is facing her disease head on.

4:40 – How to Shut Down an Abortion Clinic

As we approach the anniversary of Roe v Wade, thousands of pro-lifers are wondering what they can do to change the pro-abortion culture. Praying and picketing outside of abortion clinics are established, proven techniques. Lynn Mills joins us with a different strategy, one that is both effective and unique.

5:00 – What Ideology Unites ISIS, Boko Haram, Al Qaeda and Hamas? 

The mainstream press continues to treat attacks by ISIS, Boko Haram and other terrorists as isolated events. In reality, they all rooted in the same radical interpretation of Islam. We ask Raymond Ibrahim about the ideology that unites these terrorist groups and if that ideology can spread to groups in the west.

5:20 – Kresta Comments: TBD

5:40 – A Critic’s View of Film in 2014

Steven Greydanus is back with his review of the best-and worst- of film in 2014.

Kresta in the Afternoon – January 9th, 2015

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

4:00 – Another Victory against the HHS Mandate.

Autocam Medical, a Michigan-based manufacturer of medical products, has won its lawsuit against the HHS Mandate. The judge had previously ruled against the company, but reversed the decision upon appeal and cited last year’s Hobby Lobby case in his ruling. We speak with John Kennedy, CEO of Autocam, to discuss his company’s victory. Read an article about the victory here – http://bit.ly/1xYS2Lf

4:20—The Five Most Over-Covered Vatican Stories of 2014

Most year-end reviews cover the biggest stories of the past twelve months, or the small news stories that should have received more coverage. John Allen, a senior correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter and senior Vatican analyst for CNN, is here with a different list. John has the five Vatican stories that received too much attention from the mainstream media.

4:40 – Selma: One of the Best Films Ever?

Premiering this weekend nationwide, Selma stars David Oyewolo as Martin Luther King, Jr. and focuses on the events surrounding the voting rights marches of 1965. The film has already received praise from critics and has been nominated for four Golden Globes.
Steven Greydanus thinks the film may go down as one of the best ever. Is it really that outstanding? Steven is here with his thoughts.


5:00 – Bill May – Evangelization of Culture for Marriage and Family

EWTN, the Apostolate for Family Consecration, and Catholics for the Common Good Institute have partnered with a six part mini-series, “Evangelizing the Culture for Marriage and Family” that begins on Monday, January 12 and runs through the following Monday. It marks the commencement of a new “Marriage Reality Movement”.

The truth about marriage has become so hidden that confusion about it is causing fewer and fewer people to seek marriage as the foundation of their own families. The unfortunate result is also seen in court decisions and in our culture with the legal redefinition of marriage.

5:20 – Is Democracy Compatible With Islam?

The terror attacks in Paris have touched off a wave of support for free speech. Supporters of the attack, including British Imam Anjem Choudary, claim Islamic law does not allow for speech that is offensive to the prophet. How compatible is the concept of democracy with Islam? We ask
Robert Reilly of the American Foreign Policy Council for his insights.

5:40 – Belgian Court Reverses Euthanasia Decision

Belgian Frank van den Bleeken has been sentenced to life in prison on multiple rape charges. The country does not allow the death penalty. Van Den Bleeken claims that he cannot be rehabilitated and will never overcome his criminal tendencies and that a life behind bars will cause him extreme suffering. Because euthanasia is legal in Belgium, courts ruled last year that Van Den Bleeken could be “mercy killed” instead of serving his life sentence. That decision has been reversed; Van Den Bleeken will not be given his “right to die.” What should we make of all this? Is euthanizing a convicted criminal any different than giving them the death penalty? Is the trauma of life in prison equivalent to the kinds of suffering normally used to justify euthanasia? Wes Smith joins us with his comments on the latest developments in this unsettling story.

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