“Renaissance Priest”

An Oklahoma priest made the news today. Now, many of you may be cringing…it seems that whenever a priest is in the news lately it involves SCANDAL. But Doug Warner of Oklahoma City’s News Channel 9 KWTV found a “Renaissance Priest”, Fr. Shane Tharp, currently the rector of the National Shrine of the Infant Jesus in Prague, Oklahoma.

Fr. Tharp, a young priest in his thirties, is in touch with modern society. He is Internet savvy, blogging as the “Catholic Ragemonkey” and active on the social networking site Facebook. He does a weekly spot Friday mornings on Relevant Radio discussing contemporary culture and issues in the news. He is a fan of science fiction, promising his flock Star Trek, Star Wars and Dr. Who sermons once a year. Yes, he is not your “father’s Oldsmobile”….errrrr…I mean “priest”. He uses modern means to spread the millenia old Gospel message.

This, in and of itself, is not the reason that Fr. Tharp is in the news. He made the news because of a recent rebirth of sorts. Fr. Tharp, just a couple of years ago, weighed over 370 pounds, but has lost over 150 pounds through Weight Watchers and exercise, including training in the ancient Chinese martial art, Kung Fu San Soo in south Oklahoma City.

Read more about this amazing priest’s story on KWTV News 9 online (video of the story as aired is available at the site).

Way to go, Fr. Tharp! Keep up the good work. You are an inspiration to all!

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