Just in time for a historic occasion, the Oklahoma Catholic Broadcasting Network is expanding.
Jeff Finnell, who co-founded the radio network with Larry Sousa, called me Wednesday to say that the network was set to expand to round-the-clock programming on Friday.
The Edmond resident said the expansion has come more quickly than he or Sousa ever dreamed and they are thrilled.
Suddenly, what started out as two hours of Catholic programming on one station one day a week in 2006 has now spread to 24 hours, seven days a week programming on six frequencies across the state.
“We just firmly believe all of this has been orchestrated by God — our growth in the last year,” he said.
Finnell said the network's board of directors has shared the network's mission and goals with people in Catholic parishes throughout the state. He said the resulting support from parishioners has led to the expansion.
“All of the things that are happening could not have been orchestrated by man, which makes me just blessed by God's work,” he said.
“It's beyond our wildest dreams.”
Finnell said there will be a two-week overlap to give the public time to learn about the change.
He said the network has been offering limited programming on KTLR AM 890. He said the new station that will feature the expanded programming is KKNG on the following frequencies: 97.3 FM in Oklahoma City, 94.9 FM in Tulsa, 88.3 AM in Lawton, 88.3 FM in Prague, 105.7 FM in Bristow and 90.3 FM in Antlers.
Finnell said after the two weeks of overlapping programming, the network will air Spanish-language programming from 5 p.m. until dusk on KTLR AM 890.
He said a thrill for him is the realization that the network will now be able to provide live coverage of the coming papal election because the network is an affiliate of Eternal Word Television Network, an international TV, radio and news network.
Finnell said the timing of the network's expansion couldn't be better as Catholics across the globe await papal succession.
“Now, by our coverage with the Oklahoma Catholic Broadcasting Network, we'll be able to share that moment with radio listeners across Oklahoma.”