Good Shepherd Catholic Radio – A Brief History
By: Doug Shumard, Good Shepherd Catholic Radio
In 1997 there were five Catholic Radio stations in the United States. That number increased to 94 stations in 2005, and to 167 stations on 2010.
Catholic Radio in the Jackson-Lansing area began with a meeting of 16 Jackson residents in the spring of 2010. At that time, the name Jackson-Lansing Catholic Radio was chosen, knowing that sometime in the very near future a fully-Catholic name would be chosen. By that summer, board members began meeting with the Bishop of the Lansing Diocese, Earl Boyea, as well as many of the local pastors to review their intentions.
Programming began in the fall of 2010, with a two-hour broadcast every Saturday afternoon, preceding the Notre Dame football pre-game show on WLCM-AM, 1390, a Christian broadcast station broadcasting from Charlotte. We are grateful to the staff and management of WLCM for that very successful and warm partnership.
In the fall of 2010, a 7-member advisory board was created, in addition to the then-current four-member Board of Directors.
In January of 2012, the Board of Directors finalized a letter of intent as an affiliate of EWTN Radio (Eternal Word Television Network – Birmingham AL) as well as an agreement with Ave Maria Radio (Ann Arbor) for additional programming.
Upon returning from the 2012 EWTN Catholic Radio Conference in Birmingham, AL, serious negotiations with Spring Arbor University began for stations that would serve both Lansing and Jackson.
Later that year, in 2012, an agreement was reached for the purchase of WJKN 1510 AM, and translator 93.3 FM, which provides full-time 24/7 broadcasting.
In February of 2014, the Federal Communications Commission granted a permit to Good Shepherd Catholic Radio to begin construction of a Jackson broadcast facility and by April, the AM and FM licenses were granted.
At this point, we had been blessed with a suitable building to use for offices and a studio, however, absolutely no broadcast equipment of ANY kind, not a microphone, not a paperclip. Fundraising and purchasing became a full-time effort.
Broadcasting began on September 12, 2014 from studios in the St, Joseph Convent, located at 704 N. East Avenue in Jackson.
Online streaming of the GSCR signal began internationally on October 31, 2014.
A mobile app was created on December 11, 2014.
Regular broadcast of the Sunday Outreach Mass began at noon and again at 7 p.m. on December 14, 2015. In addition, our radio broadcast was requested by the Diocese of Lansing, who provides us with the audio portion of a videotape which is recorded in Lansing each Saturday evening.
As of April 28, 2016, Jackson-Lansing/Good Shepherd Catholic Radio will celebrate its sixth year as a radio apostolate and its 19th month of broadcasting.
GSCR is currently among more than 360 Catholic Radio stations in the U.S., along with an additional 60 translators.
Fourteen (14) Catholic Radio stations are currently broadcasting in Michigan, operated by four broadcasters, Baraga, Holy Family, Ave Maria and Good Shepherd.
Visit Good Shepherd’s website here.