Worldwide Children's Holy Hour
October 5, 2018
It’s been a crazy couple of weeks!
In the midst of preparations for our fall mission tour driving the Saint Faustina (our RV) for 6 weeks and giving about 40 presentations at 12 different locations in Indiana, Ohio and New York, we received a call from one of our Marian Fathers, Fr. Chris Alar, MIC, who is the director of the Association of Marian Helpers. That was on Thursday, September 18, and we were asked to fly up to Buffalo to be a part of the 16th Annual Worldwide Children’s Eucharistic Holy Hour.
This internationally televised event has taken place at the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Washington DC the last several years. It unites children in over 140 countries in prayer for our world. Last year Fr. Chris was the main celebrant and was slated to do it again this year. Unfortunately, the two ladies who have been spearheading this in the past became seriously ill and were unable to facilitate this year’s event. Without the organizers’ involvement, a new venue had to be chosen.
Father Chris arranged for the filming to occur on Tuesday, September 25 at St. Gregory Catholic Church in Williamsville, New York which is a suburb of Buffalo. Father Chris would bring a crew from Stockbridge to run the cameras and we agreed to write the script and to record and produce the audio. Father asked us to give a shortened version of our youth presentation since the event will be broadcast on EWTN on Friday, October 5. We all know who’s feast day that is: St. Faustina!
As you might imagine we were very excited about the opportunity, but it was quite a scramble. At this point, we had less than a week to write the script, pack and ship the audio equipment, adjust our presentation for the time allotment, and make the necessary travel arrangements. Time flew by quickly.
The plan had been to fly out of San Antonio on Monday at 10 am, arrive in Buffalo in time for dinner with Father Chris and the crew, set up at the church, and then retire to our hotel room to get rested up for the next day’s filming at 8:45 in the morning.
All was going well until we got on the plane to leave San Antonio. We were all set for push back at the gate when they found a hydraulic leak on one of the wheels. All passengers needed to deplane and be rerouted.
While Father Chris and his team frantically reworked set up plans with the good folks at St. Greg’s, we went from San Antonio to Chicago to Louisville to Baltimore and finally to Buffalo.
Long story short, 14 hours later we arrived in Buffalo at midnight. Unfortunately, our bags did not. They were on the next flight due to arrive at 1:00 a.m. and so we had to wait for them. Thankfully they arrived!
We were able to grab 3 hours of sleep before meeting at the church at 6 am for set up. Joan helped coordinate the participation of the students while Dave set up the audio system which is extremely important for a high-quality broadcast.
Dave remembers, “I plugged everything in, turned the speakers on, turned up the volume and, oh no, a loud buzzing sound came out of the speaker. Static galore.
“After unsuccessfully trying the industry standard ways of eliminating buzzing noise, I dove into my production bag, pulled out my backup audio board, plugged everything in again, and thanks be to God, no buzz. The system was working beautifully. The recorders were running and that was a good thing because time was up. It was time to begin.”
The filming went great. Father Chris did a fantastic job and the students and staff of St. Greg’s, as well as the homeschoolers in attendance, were AWESOME.
After filming we packed up our equipment, dropped it off at FedEx to be shipped to Indiana for our presentation in a couple of weeks, and then arrived at the airport in time for our departing flight.
The flight home was also delayed, this time because of a storm passing through Chicago so it was another late night arrival. The next day Dave began mixing the audio tracks while the crew in Stockbridge were editing the video. It took several days of intense work but the audio came out sounding great. The student choir, in particular, did an outstanding job and fortunately, the microphone recorded it as such.
October 5th will be the 80th anniversary of St. Faustina’s passing from this life to the next. How appropriate that we will be sharing the message of The Divine Mercy with youth all over the world. You just can’t go wrong with kids, the Blessed Mother, the Blessed Sacrament and the Promises of Divine Mercy! Glory to God!
As of this writing, we haven’t seen any of the video but they say it looks great.
So . . .
Tune in to EWTN Friday, October 5. The program will air twice:
10 am Eastern (9 am Central, 8 am Mountain, 7 am Pacific)
3:30 pm Eastern (2:30 pm Central, 1:30 pm Mountain, 12:30 pm Pacific)
Dave & Joan