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‘Outcast Catholic’ — diocesan podcast launched

-Submitted photo
The Rev. Travis Crotty, left, and the Rev. Shane Deman co-host the new ‘‘Outcast Catholic’’ podcast for the Diocese of Sioux City. The 20-minute episodes feature theology, encouragement and banter targeted to young adults.

Two priests of the Diocese of Sioux City, the Rev. Shane Deman and the Rev. Travis Crotty, have launched a new weekly podcast, “Outcast Catholic,” to reach those who may feel outcast or to those who may feel that the Catholic Church is no longer relevant, or outcast.

Deman, director of vocations for the Diocese of Sioux City and chaplain of Heelan High School in Sioux City, said he has been considering a podcast for many months and recently received some encouragement from others to move forward. He hosts the podcast with Crotty, parochial vicar of All Saints Parish in Le Mars and chaplain of Gehlen High School.

“There is a great need for new forms of evangelization,” Deman said. “Any way to proclaim the Gospel and assist the faithful should be seized.”

Although the idea of a Catholic podcast is not new, “Outcast Catholic” is unique as it is geared to an audience of Midwest Catholics and their realities with the faith.

“There are young adults throughout the Midwest who are struggling to find a place in their local parish,” Deman said. “If they don’t see vitality in their local Catholic community, they question how they belong to the larger church.”

Additionally, he said that there are many young adults who view the church as the “outcast,” appearing to be out-of-touch with the modern world.

For those who are faithful in their practice of the faith yet feel alone, being a devout Catholic can make one feel like an “outcast” without the cultural support that previous generations of Catholics enjoyed.

“These are themes that need more attention here in the Midwest,” Crotty said.. “While we don’t have all the answers, we seek to create a space where the issues are addressed to provide Catholics with support. Hopefully, this initiative from our diocese will be a source of encouragement for others around the Midwest.”

The ”Outcast Catholic” show is 20 minutes long, including banter, theology and encouragement from the two young diocesan priests. By utilizing technology offered via podcasts, Deman and Crotty hope to connect with young Catholics “where they are” if the priests can’t minister to them in the traditional fashion — in the sanctuary.

“Many young adults don’t easily find their way to the local parish,” Crotty said. “We need to go to them. By meeting them online, we hope to address some concerns that face young Catholics. I believe we can offer them a better understanding of the church and an invitation to assume their rightful place in their local parish.”

The “Outcast Catholic” show can be accessed through all major podcast directories, such as Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and Amazon Alexa. A link is also available on the Diocese of Sioux City website at scdiocese.org. The inaugural episodes are available now.

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