WDTF Three Year Celebration
In March 2007 we held a combination eighth annual meeting of Defenders of the Faith, Inc. and third-year celebration of the implementation of our radio station in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia. The radio station is owned and operated by Defenders of the Faith, Inc. We provide the best of Catholic programming 24 hours per day, seven days per week, at 107.9 FM. Defenders of the Faith, Inc., also provides a quarterly newsletter, The Defender, and a website, www.thedefender.org, that includes all past issues of the newsletter.
Our celebration meeting/dinner was held at Maria’s Garden and Inn in Berkeley Springs. This is a very ‘Catholic’ restaurant with statues and icons of the Blessed Virgin Mary throughout the various rooms. We were very fortunate to have one of our most avid sponsors attend. Father Brienz is from the Youngstown, Ohio, diocese and combined a trip to Georgetown Hospital in Bethesda, Maryland, with our celebration here in Berkeley Springs. Father gave an excellent invocation for the dinner and later privately related some stories about his work with Catholic Charities after the Katrina disaster in New Orleans.
Catholic Charities has done and continues to do a lot of major reconstruction in New Orleans. They select homes to rebuild regardless of the owners’ religious affiliation. Homes worth fixing were gutted and rebuilt with Catholic Charities funds and volunteer labor solicited from various out-of-town sources. Electricians, plumbers and members of other construction trades, all volunteers, are brought in teams, one team at a time for 30 days. Electricians were recruited first, then plumbers and so on. Father Brienz is working on a national campaign recruiting from all parishes across the country. So many priests left the New Orleans area after the disaster because there was no direction, and they didn't know what to do. Two priests lost their lives when the storm hit. One was washed out to sea; the cause of the other priest’s death was undetermined.
Soon after Father Brienz arrived in New Orleans after the disaster, he and a friend were crossing the street when a car came around the corner through a red light and struck both of them. The impact broke his leg and threw him onto the car. The windshield tore open his forehead. He still has quite a large scar. As he lay in the street broken and bleeding, a policeman bent down and said, “You can't be x-rayed with that watch on, give it to me.” He was in a bad way but he said the man took the watch, put it in his pocket and disappeared. He was taken to the hospital and forced to lie still for three days until an x-ray machine was procured. His friend who had also been struck was standing in the room with him, bleeding, and the nurse told him to go down the hall to the bathroom and remove all his clothes, take a good look at himself, and if he needed help, come and get her. The hospital had no medicine and little help.
Father’s trip to Bethesda is part of a limb loss program. Father has diabetes and is under the care of two fine physicians at Georgetown Hospital who, in the course of several operations, have removed part of his foot. He gives them credit for saving so much of his foot and is grateful his entire foot was not amputated. He is healing now from the accident.
Despite his adversity, Father Brienz was on fire with the love of the Lord. He praised God over and over for his life and his work. His joy demonstrates the gratification to be found in a life of service to the Lord. He delights in his work, and we were very blessed to have him in our midst. He is an inspiration to all of us who complain about our small problems. He was also very pleased with the work of Defenders of the Faith, Inc. and sees the importance of radio evangelization.
The dinner included a short talk by our president, Marion Thomas, and that speech is reproduced here to give the reader an idea of our broad effort in the media:
This is a wonderful evening to be together and I have an inspiring story to tell you. Only God knew when we held our annual Defender meeting last year that a Relevant Radio translator station in Hancock would be almost a reality today.
Only God knew the wonderful people He would bring together and help overcome numerous obstacles so that Relevant Radio would be heard over a much larger listening area. Only God knows the influence such a station will exert over the people with whom God will be communicating via Relevant Radio.
We thank God for this opportunity to be His hands on earth and pray that He continues to guide us as we work together to spread Relevant Radio wherever God wants it to be. This is where we are today: We started with prayer and we trusted God.
Last October our small group formed a corporation we called “Splendor of Truth Radio, Inc.”…we asked everyone to pray.
Last November we applied for a license transfer from starboard media…we asked everyone to pray.
Last November we sent out letters for donations and prayers…we asked everyone to pray.
God sent the right people at the right time to determine what we needed and the timeline to follow…we asked everyone to pray.
Last December we ordered equipment which would take weeks to come and then would need programming…we asked everyone to pray.
In January we received the FCC license...we asked everyone to pray.
In January our equipment started to arrive…we asked everyone to pray.
In January we had community problems because of our location…we asked everyone to pray.
In February our building needed to be built but it snowed…we asked everyone to pray.
In March our concrete needed to be poured…it was too cold...we asked everyone to pray. March is almost over ---at this point our building is almost completed…again we ask everyone to pray.
Next week it will be April, and we will raise our antenna tower complete with transmitting and receiving antennas. Dave Flynn will start the testing so we are completely on line with the station…we are still praying and ask you to pray as well.
To the wonderful people who have known about what we were doing and followed our growth--we thank you for your support and prayers. To you wonderful people who are hearing about this for the first time--we ask you to pray for the future of Relevant Radio.
We have believed from the beginning that with God as your pilot you can achieve the impossible.
God is in control…where does He take us from here?
Marion left us with a good question. Where do we go from here? We are working on more media outlets. One of these is a radio station in Front Royal with another organization. A very talented member of that group provided the entertainment for the evening: Valerie Von Fange, a professional singer with several CDs to her name sang several Christian songs for the group after our meeting. Everyone was pleased with her performance
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