Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Conclave Excitement and SQPN's Lenten Giving Campaign

(Photo courtesy of Fr. Roderick Vonhögen. If you click on it, it will take you to Catholic Insider Episode CIV009: Extra Omnes.)

If you've been following the events going on in the Vatican, you'll know that the Conclave had started earlier today. My friend, Fr. Roderick Vonhögen, has been there since Sunday evening, doing what he does best: bringing us the information, the news, the environment, the ambience through audio podcasts and short videos that he shot and edited himself. Of course, he's also fulfilling his duties for Dutch TV whilst there.

For Fr. Roderick, his being in Rome right now brings him full circle: his podcast career was launched in 2005, thanks to the growing popularity of the audio recordings he released in the wake of Bl. John Paul II's death and the 2005 Conclave that elected Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger as Pope Benedict XVI. Then as now, you can hear the enthusiasm in Fr. Roderick's voice and the excitement he and those around him are feeling as we all wait together for the conclave's chimney to spew the white smoke that would lead to the Habemus Papam announcement that a new pope had been selected.

Within the past couple of days, Fr. Roderick has released five episodes of the Catholic Insider, one audio teaser on SoundCloud, and at least 5 pairs of videos (one each in English and in Dutch) on his YouTube channel. He has also posted videos and photos on both his own Facebook page, as well as the Facebook page for SQPN. So you can see he's been very busy.

What makes it possible for him to bring us this content (and facilitating sharing on the social networks via his producer, Inge Loots) is the support from listeners and viewers just like you and me. Fr. Roderick and Inge are part of a Catholic New Media organisation called the Star Quest Production Network (SQPN). SQPN is currently in the midst of its Lenten Giving Campaign, and the goal is to raise at least $50,000 by the end of Lent. The end of Lent is just around the corner. If you are enjoying the audio and video content that Fr. Roderick has been releasing on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc., then please consider becoming a friend of SQPN. Any amount, big or small, will help bring SQPN closer to its goal. It will also help Fr. Roderick bring more content like that he's already delivered to you.

I'll end this post with Fr. Roderick's words in which he ended Episode CIV010 of the Catholic Insider earlier today, as well as a YouTube video of his Lenten Giving Campaign appeal that he recorded last month during his earlier visit to Rome.

Father Roderick said, "Support us, support SQPN, support our network during our Lenten Giving Campaign. We can only continue to do this kind of stuff if you help us, if you can provide us with the financial foundation for our work. We do this with you, we do it for you. If you enjoy it, we hope that you want to support us as well. Thank you so much!"

Again, please do consider giving. Click here to donate. Thank you!

(For the record, I am one of the podcasters on SQPN's roster, having co-hosted the Secrets of Harry Potter podcast. I still keep up with SHP's blog whenever interesting Potter-related news pops up from time to time.)

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