Friday, May 1, 2009

He's back! He's back! Thank God Almighty, he's back at last!

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Father Corapi Ready To Hit the Road Again

Father John Corapi gets on a phone in his Montana office and asks someone to boost the volume. The assistant who helped arrange an interview with him had warned about this. “Speak loudly,” she said, “he’s hard of hearing.”

Father Corapi himself has never been hard to hear. For nearly two decades, his thundering voice has preached the Gospel with a forceful, meat-and-potatoes theology that’s made him among the most recognizable priests in the world.

But since August 2007, that voice has been relatively silent. At first, that was by choice — having traveled more than 2 million miles spreading the good news, Father Corapi quit public speaking to focus on writings and recordings. But just one week into that hiatus, a mysterious sickness began to ravage his body and left him mostly bedridden.

He’s recovering now and has headed back to the speaking circuit.

On Aug. 15, Father Corapi, a member of the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity, will preach publicly for the first time in nearly two years, speaking on “The Lord and Giver of Life!” at a conference at HSBC Arena in Buffalo, N.Y.

Register correspondent Anthony Flott spoke with Father Corapi.

Though you’re a pro at communications, you don’t seem to give too many interviews. Is there a reason for that?

It is true; I haven’t given a lot of interviews over the years. But I haven’t turned down a lot, either. I’ve never looked for interviews, but if a reputable Catholic media outlet like the National Catholic Register asks me, I’m happy to do it.

At about this time last year, you revealed that you had a parathyroid tumor. How was that treated, and how is your health now?

I probably went to physicians in my area 11 times for different physicals. They did all kinds of tests. They kept diagnosing pneumonia, virus this and that, and I just didn’t get better. So I went to the Mayo Clinic and had exhaustive testing, and they did diagnose a parathyroid tumor.

As it turns out, it seems that was false. What it ended up being, of all things … [was] two things: chronic sleep deprivation and acute vitamin D deficiency — which, by the way, is an epidemic in northern climates. Most physicians still don’t know about it and still don’t routinely test for it. You wouldn’t believe how sick it can make you. The normal way to get it is sunlight. UVB rays stimulate your skin to synthesize what they call vitamin D.

Living in a northern climate, we have hardly any sun for six months. I have to take supplements, which they gave me in massive doses, and got my levels up. I’ve got the sleep deprivation pretty well under control, which made me feel incredibly better within about a month. . . .

In August you will be preaching in Buffalo with what you say is one of your most powerful presentations ever on the person and power of the Holy Spirit. What makes it so powerful?

Especially in these times, I felt that people not only need education in the faith — we’ve always tried to do that — but they also need inspiration.

I find that there is a lot of — I don’t want to call it quite hopelessness — but there’s a lot of distress out there around our country and around the world.

The remedy is the Holy Spirit.

The Spirit we have been given is no cowardly Spirit. He’s the Lord and giver of life. What I want to do is take a synthesis of the Church teaching on the third person of the blessed Trinity, the Holy Spirit; I want to incorporate that into the present moment.

It’s going to be very, very relevant. It’s going to concern things that are going on today in our country. I’m going to incorporate some of the Church’s social teachings into this conference, especially components of it that deal with economic things, the danger of socialism. … I’m really looking forward to being with the people again. I’ve missed them. . . . National Catholic Register



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