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Family faith is a matter for “Growing Hearts” with new Pared podcast

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growing hearts podcast - The Catholic weekly
The Growing Hearts Podcast will premiere on 25 June with Ponch Sahagun (left) and Isabel Montes (right).

Debuting on 25 June with a special two-episode premiere, the Growing Hearts Podcast by Pared Academy is helping families and educators embrace their role instilling the Catholic faith in children and young people.  

Podcast managers Isabel Montes and Ponch Sahagun believe the format will offer listeners practical advice and insightful discussions for those seeking to nurture religious life in and outside the home. 

“We want to give parents confidence in their role. They are the first and the most important educators of their children,” said Isabel.  

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“We both, and many people here working in in the schools, realise often that parents are desiring the right choices to pass on faith in very natural ways, but might often not know how to execute their role.” 

“One of the aims of our podcast then is to reach people that might not know much about the Catholic faith, that might be wanting to join the faith or that are maybe are in a Catholic school, but they don’t know much themselves or aren’t Catholic,” added Ponch. 

“We talk about experiences and some very practical tips on how to start, where to start, what to focus on when you’re a family.” 

Episodes are based around answering questions about Catholic faith, which listeners can submit ahead of time for the hosts and guests to answer. 

The first episode, “Your Journey Begins Here,” invites Tangara School for Girls and Redfield College chaplains Fr Paul Muller and Fr Phillip Elias to discuss what lies in store for families beginning their faith adventure. 


“How do you start? What things do you focus on when you’re starting to get to know the Catholic faith? Those topics are some of the most desired by school parents especially,” said Ponch. 

The podcast is produced by Pared Academy, a group of educators within the Pared Foundation who run several independent Catholic schools across Sydney, including Tangara and Redfield.  

With parents and teachers together, the academy looks to identify common problems in raising children and tackles them through research and experience.  

This isn’t Isabel and Ponch’s debut in the world of podcasting.  

The academy previously produced “The Parent-Teacher Project” and are now looking to build on their success. 

That was all about the relationship and the collaboration between parents and teachers and how they can come together to educate their children,” said Ponch. 

“From that we came up with this new podcast which would focus more on the niche of the Catholic faith.” 

Together Ponch and Isabel will simultaneously run the two projects, with 20-minute episodes of the new show releasing either fortnightly or monthly. 

Isabel says it’s important not to treat family faith journeys as a technical problem, but rather to focus on the podcast’s theme: “Growing Hearts.” 

“The heart is connected with our relationship with God. Everything we do and teach should be from the heart,” she said. 

The “Growing Hearts Podcast” debuts on 25 June on Spotify. 

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