Daybreak TV Productions will present a 30-minute program spotlighting the Year of Faith which will air on WKBW-TV Channel 7 on Nov. 24 at 11 a.m. "Opening Doors of Faith" asks the average and some not so average Catholics about Church, prayer and service.
Shot over the past year, the program features a cross section of the diocese with parishioners from city and suburban parishes, people of color, teens, vowed religious and clergy. Even Bishop Richard J. Malone makes an appearance.
Approaching the project was difficult at first for producer Paula DeAngelis, who had to physically show the spirit of the year.
"The Year of Faith is a time when you are supposed to look deep into yourself, figure out what your faith is, and become better at it," she said. "How do you show that on video?"
She decided to break the video down into three segments - prayer, service and faith. Viewers will see man-on-the-street-style interviews with people after Mass being asked how to make the Church more welcoming, how do we keep faith vibrant, and what is the mission of the Church.
For service, DeAngelis visited the Response to Love Center in Buffalo and spoke to Sister M. Johnice Rzadkiewicz, CSSF, and her staff. The final segment examines how the bishop bolsters faith in his flock and what faith means to different people.
"The content isn't unique. You can ask that of anybody," DeAngelis said. "What is unique about this piece, I think, is we were very conscious geographically. We got city, suburbs. We went all the way out to Warsaw. We talked to people in the city at Holy Cross, so you got Sudanese, Hispanic. We went to Our Lady of Hope, which is our Asian community. Then we went to the Youth Convention. We hung out at the Cathedral after Ash Wednesday and talked to families and business people. I think this is a very good representation of Buffalo and who the Catholics are in the Diocese of Buffalo."
Executive producer Claire Rung called the program "honest."
"As I looked at the interviews there were remarks from people who were just wonderfully honest and candid," she said. "I think that's what we were trying to achieve."
Daybreak basically spent the Year of Faith asking others about their Year of Faith. So, what did they learn from it?
"Probably by hearing their answers to my questions made me realize that I have to spend more time in prayer," DeAngelis said. "I can fall into everything you shouldn't say - I have an 8 year old; I work full time. When I said that to Father (Thomas) Maloney (pastor of St. Amelia Parish in Tonawanda), he said, 'Pull your 8-year-old into your prayer life.' I thought to myself, 'How would that work?' I'm trying at night. I always say prayers with Nick, but we're taking it a step further. We say a decade of the rosary together."
Funded by Vincent and Harriet Palisano Foundation, "Opening the Doors of Faith" airs Nov. 24 at 11 a.m.