Archdiocese launches Pakistan's premiere Catholic web radio station
The Archdiocese of Karachi last month launched Pakistan's first Catholic radio station online, focused on the spirit of the new evangelization and aimed at spreading faith in the country, reports Catholic News Agency.
Archbishop Joseph Coutts voiced hope that “the radio will plant seeds which will sprout and grow as listeners will learn the message of Jesus Christ” at the Nov. 22 launch at St. Patrick's Boys' High School in Karachi.
More than 1,000 laity were present at the launch of FM 777 – Media for Jesus, along with priests, religious, and Archbishop Emeritus Evarist Pinto.
“My vision is simple, but very strong: to use media for Jesus, to evangelize everyone,” said Fr. Arthur Charles, the brain behind the project, said.
“We are committed to spreading the message of Jesus Christ our Lord and the teachings of the Church to the world through media … this radio station is sure to enrich the lives of our listeners in our country and beyond,” he told CNA Dec. 4.
Fr. Charles, who is director of social communications for the Karachi archdiocese, said that with the advent of broadband, online radio “offers opportunities” that beat out the traditional radio format.
With a team of seven volunteers, FM 777 broadcasts content 24/7 through live streaming, with podcasts of programs always available for access.
“FM 777 is more than just talk radio,” Fr. Charles said. “It's a platform for illuminating informative subjects, covering life seen through the lens of Scripture, coupled with the teachings and canonical tradition of the Church.”
Talk shows will feature guest speakers discussing social issues, global events, politics affecting matters of faith, the Church, interreligious affairs, current events, journeys to faith, theology, and apologetics.
Many segments will be aired in both European languages including English, and Asian languages including Tamil, Konkani, Hindi, and Arabic.
Music heard on the station features lyrics in Latin, Arabic, Tamil, and Urdu, among other languages.
“We give thanks for all that God has done and commit the radio project into his hands,” said Archbishop Coutts. “Hopefully people in the country and all over will receive a message of hope along with information to enhance their lives in peace, love, and harmony.”
Archbishop Pinto congratulated Fr. Charles and his team, calling FM 777 “a significant milestone” and praying that Christ might bless the venture “to bring the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ to the men and women to our times.”
He pointed to Pope Francis' constant exhortation to the faithful to be present in the world of media, and recalled St. John Paul II's calling media the 'Areopagus of the modern age.’
Among FM 777's collaborators are Gohar-i-Nayab, a teacher; and Waris Shakeel, a senior accountant at Good News TV and a staff member of the Catechecial Centre Karachi. They are currently developing a mobile app for smartphone users.
The radio station joins a host of other media offered by the Archdiocese of Karachi, including The Christian Voice, an English-language weekly; the web-based Good News TV; Agahi, a weekly newspaper with an online edition; and accounts on Facebook and Twitter.
“The Lord is using us to reach the entire world with the gospel of Jesus Christ,” Fr. Charles concluded.
“Catholic web radio is the need of the hour, because it will facilitate to develop values, understanding our beliefs and moulding our personality and knowledge,” Asif Nasir, a catechist, told CNA.
“It will produce a healthier mental and emotional life, more stability, and all the necessary tools to face their challenges in life in the best possible manner.”