ROCKVILLE CENTRE, NEW YORK, June 8, 2007—Pope Benedict XVI conferred the papal honor of monsignor on Father James C. Vlaun, president and CEO of Telecare, the television station of the Diocese of Rockville Centre.
“I’m very, very touched,” Msgr. Vlaun said of the announcement. “I have a very deep sense of gratitude to God, but also to the bishop for saying ‘thank you’ in this way. It’s a beautiful honor.”
When the Most Reverend William Murphy, Bishop, Diocese of Rockville Centre, made the announcement, Msgr. Vlaun immediately thought of his parents, who are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary this year.
“I knew that when I called them they were gonna go bonkers, and of course they did,” Msgr. Vlaun said. “And they were very, very excited and remain very, very excited. I’m so glad that I have my mom and dad to share this joy with and I’m so glad for their joy.”
Born in Astoria, N.Y., and raised in West Babylon, N.Y., Msgr. Vlaun attended St. John the Baptist High School, West Islip, N.Y. In 1983, he earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and sociology from Cathedral College of the Immaculate Conception, Douglaston, N.Y. In 1988, he earned a Master of Divinity degree from the Seminary of the Immaculate Conception, Huntington, N.Y. He was ordained into the priesthood June 4, 1988.
“There was really nothing else I could think of that would allow me to use my gifts,” he said of becoming a priest. “The priesthood has been the perfect vocation in my life.”
His first assignment was St. Mary parish, East Islip, N.Y. He served as chaplain at St. John the Baptist High School, West Islip, N.Y., from 1992 to 2005.
A music enthusiast, Msgr. Vlaun has hosted the nationally syndicated radio show “Religion and Rock” since 1989. He hosted his first Telecare show in 1991 and earned a master’s degree in broadcasting from the New York Institute of Technology in 1995.
Msgr. Vlaun was named president of Telecare in 2005. He currently hosts three shows on the station: “Good News with Father Jim,” a discussion on positive happenings around the Diocese; “Real Food,” a cooking show focusing on the Holiness of the meal and all who prepare it; and “Everyday Faith Live,” a live 30-minute news show.
“Working in communications is a source of energy for me and a source of excitement,” he said. “I find it the way to evangelize people at large.”
Msgr. Vlaun is the author of “Life, Love, and Laughter: The Spirituality of the Consciousness Examen” and “Feasts of Life: Recipes from Nana’s Wooden Spoon.” He is currently writing a third book for college students called “Going Forward with God.” All the proceeds from Msgr. Vlaun’s books go to the Life, Love and Laughter Foundation, which helps provide Catholic education for young people.
A noted speaker, he has taught communications and broadcasting for St. John’s University and New York Institute of Technology. He is currently teaching in the M.A. and M.Div programs at the Seminary of the Immaculate Conception, Huntington, N.Y.
He is a member of a diocesan mission team and a board member of Good Samaritan Hospital, Our Lady of Consolation Residence and St. John the Baptist High School.
Editor’s Note: Photo Courtesy of The Long Island Catholic/Greg Shemitz
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About The Diocese of Rockville Centre
Celebrating its Golden Jubilee, the Diocese of Rockville Centre (www.drvc.org) was formed in 1957 and covers 1,198 square miles in Nassau and Suffolk Counties. The diocese serves approximately 1.4 million Catholics (total population in both counties is approximately 2.8 million). There are 134 parishes in 115 towns. Last year over 18,000 baptisms, 18,000 confirmations, 19,000 first communions and 4,000 marriages took place in the diocese. There are approximately 22,000 students in Catholic elementary schools; 13,000 in secondary schools and 3,300 in higher institutions. There are 69 Catholic elementary and high schools and one Catholic college in the diocese. There are also 120,189 total students in religious education. Catholic Health Services of Long Island consists of five hospitals, three nursing homes, a community-based home for those with special needs and a hospice. Last year, Catholic Charities assisted more than 59,000 individuals who are poor, vulnerable and disadvantaged on Long Island. (4/20/07)
For more information Contact:
Sean P. Dolan
Director of Communications
516-678-5800, ext. 625