He’s All About Love

The other night we were watching an encore presentation of last week’s “Life on the Rock” on EWTN (the Catholic channel). The guest was Reverend Stan Fortuna. It was the first time I had ever even heard of the man, and my husband and I kept looking at each other in shock as we listened to him talk. After about fifteen minutes my husband said, “He’s the coolest priest ever.”

I don’t know whether to refer to him as Father Stan or Reverend, because when I think of him all I can think is “Stan Fortuna” (kind of like “Rebecca Dew” in Anne of Windy Poplars).  No matter what you call him, he has a very mesmerizing and interesting way of preaching. He has that vibe that many people associate with African-American preachers, but he’s this Greek-Italian guy from the Bronx. He refers to John Paul II as “J.P.”; he calls Pope Benedict “B.B.B.”: Beautiful Bavarian Benedict. And his love for the Lord just shines through. If he wasn’t so sincere, people would probably think he was play-acting.

As we watched him talk about the saints, particularly St. Francis, the graphics said that he was a recording artist. We began to be very curious about how a priest could be a recording artist, outside of like Gregorian chant. Then they aired a pre-taped performance before they went to a commerical break. Stan Fortuna was there with his bass guitar in his gray religious habit. His song was a mix of hip-hop, jazz, reggae, and Stevie Wonder. His guitar work alone was amazing. To be honest, my husband and I usually find most contemporary Christian music to be really cheesy, but as my husband said, “This guy is cool as shit!” (Can you say that about a priest even if it is completely true?)

Check it out for yourself. This is one of his more jazzy tunes…

as opposed to his hard-core rap…

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