By Dave Jolivet, Anchor Editor
NEW BEDFORD, Mass. — It’s a small Catholic radio station that was born in March of 2011. At 88.5 on the FM dial, it’s what’s known as a “micro-FM” radio station. WPMW, Radio CorMariae, with its limited range of New Bedford, Westport and Fairhaven, is tiny compared with the giants surrounding it on the FM radio dial. But just as young David slew the giant Goliath in the Biblical story, “little” Radio CorMariae gains its strength from Divine sources, and thanks to the determination and technical savvy of the Franciscan Friars in the Whaling City, the 24-hour source of Catholic news, inspiration and entertainment is reaching a far greater audience than its humble 140 watts would seemingly allow.
Streaming live online and with a free mobile app for Android and iOS smart phones, Radio CorMariae will be able to enhance this Advent season, making it one of the greatest Christmas gifts a faithful Catholic can receive.
“The best thing going for our limited-listening area is our free app to listen to the station from anywhere in the world [with Internet connection],” Friar John Mary, F.I. told The Anchor. The app is available at Apple’s App Store and from Google Play.
Between WPMW’s local broadcasting and EWTN feed, Catholic listeners will have a full slate of Advent programming available to them on their FM dial, smart phone or computer.
“For the Advent season, EWTN already plays its own special programming which I have found to be very good,” explained Friar John. “In addition to EWTN’s special programming, Radio CorMariae has airing during Advent, two Novenas: the Immaculate Conception and Christmas.
“For each of the nine days before the Solemnity dates, December 8 and December 25, the particular half-hour Novena program will air twice on the Novena days; at 5:30 a.m. and 9:30 p.m.”
The Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary will be broadcast on WPMW on each of the Sundays of Advent, beginning this Sunday, and every day through the Christmas octave, concluding on Jan. 1, 2015.
The station will continue to provide local Catholic news and happenings, with some of its news sources coming from a collaboration with The Anchor. The community calender news is usually aired at the end of even hours of the day, unless preempted by EWTN programming.
Throughout the Advent season, EWTN will provide quality, Spiritually-uplifting programming including:
— Advent reflections for each of the four weeks; Week One: Abbot David Charlesworth, O.S.B. of Buckfast Abbey talks about the importance of personal conversion as the means for getting ready for the coming of Christ.
Week Two: Father Thomas Regan, O.S.B. talks about the message of the need to prepare well in order to properly celebrate Advent and Christmas, by putting Christ at the heart of Christmas.
Week Three: Father Guy Nicholls offers a meditation on the third Week of Advent, inviting us to prepare our hearts like Mary to rejoice in the coming of the Lord.
Week Four: Father Ian Hellyer offers a reflection on the fourth week of Advent, witnessing that hope is at the heart of Advent, found ultimately in the Word made Flesh.
— Christmas on Guitar; classical guitarist Giovanni De Chiaro performs carols and other traditional Christmas music.
— A five-part Advent retreat with Father Pablo Straub on the meaning of Advent.
— A Musical Journey of Christmas with Diane Bish.
— A live Homage to the Immaculate with Pope Francis on the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception.
— Live Masses on the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception from EWTN in Irondale, Ala., and from the Basilica of the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C.
— An EWTN Radio Christmas Card including seasonal music and special greetings to listeners around the world.
— An old-fashioned Family Christmas with Irish singer Dana.
— A dramatic reading of Charles Dickens’ classic, “A Christmas Carol.”
A full slate of EWTN programming will air on Christmas Eve day and Christmas Day.
Friar John also told The Anchor, “Those who are connected to social media can view our Facebook (facebook.com/RadioCorMariae) and
Twitter (twitter.com/RadioCorMariae) posts, which we try to make appropriate for the season of the year we are in.”
Radio CorMariae is always looking for volunteers to help the station with: web and social media; audio mixing; recording technicians; voice talent; station operations; interviewer; manage volunteers; help plan events; and assist at events.
For the Radio CorMariae Advent schedule (subject to change), to offer volunteer assistance, or to contribute financially, contact the station at its website at radiocormariae.com, by calling 508-996-8274, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whether on the road or at home, quality Catholic Advent radio programming is simply a click away at Radio CorMariae, helping to keep Christ in Christmas this season.