On March 7, Archbishop Bernard Hebda will join Bishop Frank Dewane of Venice, Florida, and Relevant Radio’s “Father Rocky” for a half-hour family rosary that will be broadcast live across the United States.
The rosary is part of Relevant Radio’s weekday Family Rosary Across America, an interactive half-hour live show at 7 p.m. Central that guides families through the rosary. It is typically hosted by Father Francis Hoffman, executive director/CEO of Relevant Radio and a priest of Opus Dei who is popularly known as “Father Rocky,” with participants calling in to share their prayer intentions. The program draws about 100,000 listeners, according to its website.
The March 7 show will be broadcast from St. Isabel Catholic Church in Sanibel, Florida, southwest of Fort Myers. Both bishops and Father Rocky plan to be at St. Isabel along with a small gathering of local parishioners.
Inviting Archbishop Hebda and Bishop Dewane to lead the March 7 rosary was the brainchild of Joel Hazzard, retired CEO of Eagan-based Ergotron and, along with Archbishop Hebda, a member of Relevant Radio’s board of directors.
Hazzard, 64, was raised Catholic but only recently returned to the faith, he said, inspiring his wife, Heidi, and their two adult children to convert to Catholicism, too. The Hazzards are involved in several Catholic organizations and charitable efforts, he said, but are especially passionate about Relevant Radio and its Family Rosary Across America. The couple often step out of social engagements to take time to listen and pray the rosary with the evening show, he said.
A native of Roseville who grew up attending St. Rose of Lima, Hazzard lives in both Florida and Osceola, Wisconsin, where he worships at the parish cluster of St. Anne in Somerset, Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Farmington and St. Joseph in Osceola. He hopes that the bishops’ involvement will inspire Catholics in both the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Venice to pray the rosary, especially as a family and with children, and spread interest in Relevant Radio, which is broadcast on 1330 AM in the area of the archdiocese.
The March 7 program will include a 15-minute interview with Archbishop Hebda and Bishop Dewane that will begin at 6:45 p.m. Central, immediately before the 7 p.m. rosary.
“Relevant Radio is a beautiful ministry,” Hazzard said. “We can’t be the greatest Catholics we can be by just going to church. We need to feed our souls every day. And Relevant Radio does a beautiful job with that. … They bring in so many souls in the Catholic faith wherever they go in the market.”
With the Family Rosary Across America, “the more of us praying together, the world’s going to be a better place,” he said.
When he was a child, his family prayed the rosary, he said, but he didn’t understand why.
“I knew the basics of it, but it was more out of duty rather than the understanding of it. And I think (for) a lot of people in my generation, that was probably the case,” he said. “And here (with the Family Rosary Across America), you listen to the audience. The nightly audience is over 100,000, where people from all over the world and all over the United States are praying together as families. And these beautiful kids come in with their intentions. And it’s really humbling when you have a bad day or you think about things that have gone wrong in your life, or if you lose a loved one or something, but then you listen to some of these intentions and you realize how much suffering there is out there and how much prayer is needed.”
Praying the rosary also strengthens families, he said.
“I hope that we get many to start listening and praying the rosary with their families,” he said. “It’s the old saying: The family who prays together, stays together.”
Founded in 2000 outside of Green Bay, Wisconsin, Relevant Radio’s network extends coast to coast via 195 stations. Among its special Lenten offerings are “40 Lenten Lessons on the Mass,” free daily catechetical videos from Father Rocky. Learn more at relevantradio.com.
This article was written by Maria Wiering of The Catholic Spirit and was originally published on TheCatholicSpirit.com.
Please join us for the Family Rosary Across America at 7pm CT at relevantradio.com/family. The Interview with Archbishop Hebda will be broadcast on Relevant Radio stations and on our audio stream at 6:45 pm CT.
Maria Wiering, “Archbishop Hebda to lead Family Rosary Across America on Relevant Radio March 7,” The Catholic Spirit, March 4, 2022, republished March 7, 2022,