The first American radio show to broadcast a week’s worth of programming from Vatican Radio has returned there for a third time.

“The Catholic Guy” – Lino Rulli

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Lino Rulli usually records his show “The Catholic Guy” in New York City. But he recently spent five days broadcasting from Rome with the same microphone used by John Paul II and Benedict XVI. And for the first time 40 SIRIUS XM listeners accompanied the comedic host on a sold-out pilgrimage to Rome, Florence and Assisi.

Lino Rulli – “The Catholic Guy” host:

“We thought it could be like a version practically of a reality show. Can we all survive this experience? And it was probably the best thing I’ve ever done in my entire career. ”

The radio host said he was glad to be a part of their lives and show them the history of the Church, and this time not just through the microphone. With visits to the Vatican Museums, San Callisto Catacombs and the Holy Stairs, he had plenty of stories to share with his listeners. After all, his life is the material for the show. He says he discusses things most people can relate to but that might also keep them away from the Church. He talks about going to confession, going on dates, and juggling football games on Sundays.

“What I try to talk the most about at the show is being devout does not mean being boring. Being reverent at Mass doesn’t mean being reverent at dinner. Being a devout Catholic who believes everything the Church teaches doesn’t mean you aren’t supposed to enjoy life.”

He says he wants to encourage people to go to Church, but he will not tell them to go. He says when people listen about a regular guy who goes to Church, they might decide on their own to go back to church. “The Catholic Guy” host says it can be challenging to provide a funny and sometimes off-beat take on living out the faith because some people may think he is laughing at the Church. But he says he is laughing with the Church and that evangelization does not have to be boring.

“I really do believe laughter is the best because when you laugh your guard is brought down and when your guard is brought down you are more open to anything in life like the faith.”

Rulli says the pilgrimage in Italy has renewed his energy as a radio host because too often in media and as a Catholic one doesn’t get a chance to interact with listeners. Rulli had 100 listeners on a waiting list for this pilgrimage, evidence that speaking about Catholicism can be entertaining.