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Last updated: Tue. Jul. 08, 2014 - 08:18 am EDT

Local radio veteran back on the air as host of Redeemer Radio's new local morning show

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New local radio morning show

WHAT: Local Catholic radio station Redeemer Radio has launched a live, local morning show, with Deacon Jim Tighe as host.

WHEN: 6-8 a.m. weekdays

WHERE: Redeemer Radio, WHPP, 106.3-FM, in northeast Indiana and WRRO, 89.9-FM, in northwest Ohio

INFORMATION: 436-9598 or www.redeemerradio.com

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It's a little "rugged" getting up at 4 a.m. again, but that melts away when Deacon Jim Tighe walks into the studio at Redeemer Radio, WHPP, 106.3-FM.

"It's a kick," Tighe said of sliding into the chair as host of the Fort Wayne Catholic radio station's new local morning show, "Redeemer Mornings."

The program, which debuted June 30, airs 6-8 a.m. weekdays. Tighe is assisted by morning show producer Andrea Allphin, meteorologist Jennifer Narramore and local news anchor Peter Kileen.

Redeemer Radio, which until recently broadcast at 1450-AM, has wanted to do a local live morning show since 2009 or 2010, said Dave Stevens, station executive director.

"No successful radio station really exists without a local morning show," Stevens said.

Listeners had to turn away from the station's nationally syndicated morning programming to get local news, weather and the time, Stevens said. "Redeemer Mornings" now gives listeners all of that information, plus news and information about the Catholic faith.

Station leaders also wanted to find the right person to host the show, Stevens said. They believe they have done that in Tighe, who served as a volunteer on the station's programming committee.

He has more than 30 years of experience in radio, including both on-air and in advertising sales.

Coincidentally, joining Redeemer Radio brings him full circle in local radio: He started here in 1989 at stations at 1450-AM — Redeemer's former dial spot — and 101.7-FM. In the early to mid-1990s, he worked as morning show host and an ad salesman at what was then WSHI, 106.3-FM, Redeemer's new signal location.

Tighe also worked in advertising sales for a dozen years for WOWO, 1190-AM, before going to work in 2009 as director of the Office of Catechesis for the Catholic Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend. He left the diocese early this year and joined Redeemer Radio in March.

"Early this year, I got to thinking, 'This is where I need to be,'" Tighe said of the station.

"It is a way for me to use my talents and serve God," he said. "I had never planned it that way."

Tighe said the station's staff and volunteers have been great.

"The people here are very dedicated to what they do," he said.

When listeners hear him on the air, they are going to hear a friend, Stevens said. "He has that relatability quality that is very hard to find."

Tighe also has a deep understanding of the Catholic faith, Stevens said. Along with becoming a deacon in the church three years ago, he nearly has completed work for a master's degree in theology from the University of Notre Dame.

But people expecting to tune in for a two-hour sermon will be surprised.

"We want to fulfill the needs of our listeners," Tighe said. "But joy and fun are the operative words."

He and Allphin spend a lot of time off the air planning the week's shows. Along with reports on news from the Vatican and diocese, listeners also will hear Tighe interview people about timely topics, such as last week's ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court that the federal government couldn't force the Hobby Lobby chain to offer health care benefits that violate company owners' religious beliefs.

But he wants to keep the show fun and focused on how topics affect the average person in his or her daily life.

He likens the show to the biblical parable of the sower and the seed: Some seeds fall on fertile ground and sprout, some fall on rocky soil or a path and don't survive.

"People will take away from it what they need," he said.

Those not open to exploring or deepening their faith now also may become fertile ground in the future, he said.

"So we just spread the seed," he added.

kkilbane@news-sentinel.com


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