Catholic Vitamin Q: Qualities

Well, Deacon Tom loves it when we are blessed to have a brother deacon join us on Catholic Vitamins. And what a gift it was to have Deacon Greg Kandra join us for this weekend’s Vitamin Q: Qualities.

Deacon Greg serves the Diocese of Brooklyn in New York. He is a 26 year broadcast journalist, having started as a production/script typist for CBS News. Later, Greg was a writer and producer in New York and Washington and received many prestigious awards. He has received two Emmys, four awards from the Writers Guild of America and two George Foster Peabody awards.

Before joining CBS Digital Media, Greg Kandra spent 24 years as a writer and producer for CBS News. Over the years, his work has appeared on “CBS Evening News,” “48 Hours,” “Sunday Morning,” and “60 Minutes II,” among other programs. He also contributed to “The Osgood File” and “Dan Rather Reporting. Outside of the CBS newsroom work he was involved in, Kandra is active in a variety of ministries of the Catholic Church.

Specific and of most interest to our Catholic Vitamins ministry — during the interview with Greg, we found out that he went from being (what seemed to be) a nominal Catholic to a man reborn into his Catholic faith after the events of 9/11. We asked Greg to share his views on the “qualities” of a practicing Catholic. In part, his answers reflect what we preach and share about. It’s related to that old saying that you may be the only Bible someone will ever read.” We can say we’re Catholic. We must demonstrate what it means to be a Catholic… to demonstrate what it means to be a real follower and disciple of Jesus Christ.

You can find Deacon Greg Kandra’s writing over at Patheos. Here’s the link:



Our closing music was provided courtesy of MICHAEL JAMES METTE from his album ALWAYS WHAT I NEED. Most of you will recognize the long-time popular praise and worship song, OPEN THE EYES OF MY HEART. You can find Michael and his music at his website:





These are some ‘qualities.’


Ignatius of Antioch

“Let no one do anything of concern to the Church without the bishop. Let that be considered a valid Eucharist which is celebrated by the bishop or by one whom he ordains [i.e., a presbyter]. Wherever the bishop appears, let the people be there; just as wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church” (Letter to the Smyrneans 8:2 [A.D. 110]).

Cyprian of Carthage

“They alone have remained outside [the Church] who, were they within, would have to be ejected.. . . There (John 6:68–69) Peter says, upon whom the Church would be built, teaching in the name of the Church and showing that even if a stubborn and proud multitude withdraws because it does not wish to obey, yet the Church does not withdraw from Christ. The people joined to the priest, and the flock clinging to their shepherd in the Church. You ought to know, then, that the bishop is in the Church and the Church in the bishops; and if someone is not with the bishop, he is not in the Church. They vainly flatter themselves who creep up, not having peace with the priest of God, believing that they are secretly in communion with certain individuals. For the Church, which is one and catholic, is not split or divided, but is indeed united and joined by the cement of priests who adhere to one another” (Letters 66[67]:8 [A.D. 253]).

Cyril of Jerusalem

“[The Church] is called catholic, then, because it extends over the whole world, from end to end of the earth, and because it teaches universally and infallibly each and every doctrine which must come to the knowledge of men, concerning things visible and invisible, heavenly and earthly, and because it brings every race of men into subjection to godliness, governors and governed, learned and unlearned, and because it universally treats and heals every class of sins, those committed with the soul and those with the body, and it possesses within itself every conceivable form of virtue, in deeds and in words and in the spiritual gifts of every description” (Catechetical Lectures 18:23 [A.D. 350]).

“And if you ever are visiting in cities, do not inquire simply where the house of the Lord is—for the others, sects of the impious, attempt to call their dens ‘houses of the Lord’—nor ask merely where the Church is, but where is the Catholic Church. For this is the name peculiar to this holy Church, the mother of us all, which is the spouse of our Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God” (ibid., 18:26).

In addition to our guest Greg – we want to recognize our other contributors to Catholic Vitamins. They include:

Cheryl Dickow, author of Our Jewish Roots and president of Bezalel Books at

Peggy Bowes, author of the Rosary Workout Book, also available through Bezalel Books or through Peggy’s website:

Justin Stroh, evangelist, speaker, composer and musician. His website is found at

We also want to thank Justin for gifting us with permission to recently play his new song Reach From Me. It’s a song for healing adapted from the famous prayer of St. Francis and inspired by the Missionary heart of St. Therese.  This new meditational song will inspire young and old alike to seek God for the strength to reach out in the love of Jesus Christ. CLICK HERE to go to Justin’s web store to hear the song and if you like what you hear purchase it at special introductory price of only $.89

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