The Cost of Evangelizing Over the Airwaves

Twenty years ago there wasn’t a single Catholic radio station in the country. Today, while Catholic radio still lags well behind Protestant radio, there are approximately 160 Catholic stations airing across the U.S., including networks such as Relevant Radio, Holy Spirit Radio, Ave Maria Radio, EWTN and Sirius XM’s “The Catholic Channel,” (although you need to purchase a special radio for that).

No matter how you look at it, radio remains an excellent source for information and evangelizing. It’s one of the few mediums that’s still free, and you can listen to it while you’re doing other things, including driving.

According to statistics, somewhere between 71-93% of adults listen to the radio at some time during the week.

Last evening, I had the pleasure of hearing Father Francis “Rocky” Hoffman, executive director at Relevant Radio, speak to a group of Catholic radio supporters.

He told inspiring stories about how Catholic radio has led to conversions, people coming back to the practice of their faith, saved lives and souls, and more.

As a former accountant, he has also calculated what he calls the “capital cost per hour of instruction,” and said that Catholic radio remains one of the most efficient methods of instruction.

He compared the “capital cost per hour of instruction” of Catholic radio with that of other Catholic instruction.

The “capital cost per hour of instruction” at the University of Notre Dame, he said, would be $500. The cost per hour of instruction at a Catholic retreat center would be $150. The cost per hour of instruction at a Catholic high school would be $125, and $100 at a Catholic elementary school.

By comparison, he said that the “capital cost per hour of instruction” via Catholic radio is about $6.