CCI Executive Director Robert Gilligan hosts the Catholic Conference Radio Hour on the third Monday of the month on Relevant Radio. Gilligan discusses current public policy issues affecting the Church with experts and newsmakers.
Bishop Edward Braxton of Belleville talks about the pastoral letter he issued in January, "The Racial Divide in the United States." Fr. William Grogan, the Archdiocese's vicar for health care, and Patrick Cacchione of the Illinois Catholic Health Association, discuss Illinois Senate Bill 1564, which essentially guts the Illinois Healthcare Right of Conscience Act. Illinois State Rep. Barbara Wheeler (R-Crystal Lake) joins Bob to talk about the House Violence Prevention Task Force and also House Bill 2701, The Ultrasound Opportunity Act. Finally, Illinois Citizens for Life lobbyist Ralph Rivera discusses House Bill 4013, which would allow taxpayer money to pay for the elective abortions in state employees' health insurance plans and the state's Medicaid program
Archbishop Blase Cupich joins Bob to talk about his general impressions of the political landscape of Illinois, three months after his installation Mass as the new archbishop of Chicago. Then, Fr. Dan Brandt, chaplain to the Chicago Police Department, gives listeners a glimpse into his unique ministry. Sr. Carol Keehan, president and CEO of Catholic Health Association of the United States, talks about the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and why Congress should reauthorize the program before it expires in September. To close out the show, state Sen. Julie Morrison, D-Deerfield, discusses Senate Bill 43, which aims to post the national human trafficking hotline number at high risk areas, such as bus and train stations, truck stops, and rest areas.
The football season will cap off with this Sunday's Super Bowl, but you may not be aware that such high profile events can act like a magnet for human trafficking. Sr. Rose Mary Meyer of Project Irene joins Bob to discuss the state's efforts to clamp down on this scourge. Ron Jackson of Catholic Charities USA talks about Congressman Paul Ryan's proposal to consolidate federal programs into block grants to the states. Erendira Rendon of The Resurrection Project joins the program to talk about her organization's outreach on President Obama's executive action on immigration. And Sr. Lakshmie Napagoda of the House of Good Shepherd talks about her organization's unique approach to help women with children break the cycle of domestic violence.
Claire Halbur, a parishioner at the Cathedral of St. Raymond in Joliet, joins Bob to talk about her experience on Lifetime channel's "The Sisterhood: Becoming Nuns." The reality show followed Claire and four other young women on their journey of discernment as they visited three convents across the country. Then, Elizabeth Fenner, editor-in-chief of Chicago Magazine, talks about the just-published cover story she wrote on the decreasing number of Catholics in the Archdiocese of Chicago. To close out the show, Bob talks about the upcoming March for Life Chicago on Jan. 18 in downtown Chicago. Emily Zender, march chairwoman and executive director of Illinois Right to Life, tells about the great line-up of speakers, including Archbishop Blase Cupich and pro-life activist Abby Johnson. Mary Hallan Fio-Rito of the Archdiocese of Chicago discusses an Aid for Women brunch that will be held the morning of the march featuring Cardinal George as the key speaker and Father Rocky of Relevant Radio as the celebrant of Mass.