Until the end of last month, AM 1580 in Columbus, Ohio was formatted as a progressive radio outlet combining programs like the Stephanie Miller Show with syndicated Air America Radio content. That’s all in the past. Now 1580 AM is St. Gabriel Radio, Catholic radio endorsed by the Bishop of Columbus and featuring talk shows and sermons by Catholic priests, nuns, and allied laity. As time passed, I tuned in to 1580 AM more and more rarely; the broadcasts were pretty predictable celebrations of partisan teaminess in which everything Democratic was laudable, everything Republican was condemnable, and the topics of the day matched talking points sent out from the Democratic National Committee. Besides, as the old owner lost more and more money, more and more hours of the day were filled with infomercials for gold, skin creams and Blueberry Magic.
I have to say I enjoy listening St. Gabriel Radio in Columbus so much more. Make no mistake, the new AM 1580 is just as dogmatic as the old one, but that the dogma is wilder and wackier. My current favorite is the sermon hour by Catholic priest John Corapi. Father Corapi is fond of characterizing conflict between Christianity and Islam as a Holy War, “a true battle between good and evil.” Can you guess which one is good and which one is evil?
In Corapi’s latest sermon, aired this past Friday morning on AM 1580, Father Corapi declared it the duty of Catholics to have many children if possible. Why? Just look at Europe, Corapi said. In Europe, Catholicism is on the wane and Catholics are having fewer children. In the future, Europe will become Muslim because Catholics aren’t having enough children, says Corapi, and we don’t want that to happen to the United States, do we? Well, I don’t know about you and me, but John Corapi sure doesn’t, and he was honest enough not only to say so, but to declare his belief that God, the Almighty ruler of the Universe, wants Catholics to start birthing more babies to keep it from happening. Contraception, according to Father Corapi, is the work of Satan to weaken the Holy struggle of Catholicism against Islamic invasion.
At the very least, John Corapi’s sermons on AM 1580 are interesting, which is more than I could ever have said about the old Al Franken or Blueberry Magic shows. I’ll tune in next week with the hopes of learning more from Father Corapi about how discrimination against gay people is “charitable” and “gracious.”