EWTN’s New Series Features a Catholic ‘Julia Child’
Irondale, AL (EWTN) – When you first see Joanna Bogle cooking on the set of her newest EWTN television series, “Feasts & Seasons,” you might be reminded of Julia Child. It’s not so much a physical resemblance. It’s more that Bogle’s English accent and witty, breezy style are reminiscent of Child’s upper-crust American accent and style. But, unlike Child, Bogle is the first to admit that she isn’t a great cook.
She is, however, a first-rate journalist, who has written for England’s top newspapers; and a politician, who became a local councilor in her native England years ago, despite being the youngest candidate ever to be elected at that time, not to mention a female. She is also a prolific freelance writer and author, whose book, “Feasts & Seasons,” was made into a radio series for the BBC. All of which helps explain the concept behind this unique show.
“I do cook, but I’m not a great cook,” Bogle says. “What I do love are history, traditions, customs, and heritage.”
What makes Bogle’s series popular with viewers? It’s not just the simple dishes she features, which anyone can prepare. It’s her explanation of the history behind the dishes, her vivid portrayal of the celebrations during which the food is eaten, and her gleeful demonstrations of the crafts, songs, decorations and other customs that make a day like Christmas or a season like Lent special.
Bogle first got interested in this subject as a young Army wife. She had left the glamour of London, where she had been working as a journalist and a politician, to marry Jaime Bogle, whom the Army promptly sent to Germany. Joanna, who had also busied herself writing a series of books on local history in England under her maiden name of “Nash,” suddenly found herself with time on her hands.
“When you get married and are running your own home, you slowly realize what a feast of interesting things this is – so much to learn,” she says. “We made German friends and they told us how they celebrated Christmas. I also realized if Easter was going to happen [in my home], it would happen because of me. I picked up German traditions, French traditions, and American traditions. My husband was Australian and had reverse seasons and other traditions. A lot of ideas came from children too.”
Now that she’s completed three of the six planned series for EWTN on “Feasts & Seasons,” ideas also come from viewers, who may email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Every broadcaster loves contact with the audience,” Bogle says. “‘Feasts & Seasons’ is the thing I’m most interested in. It’s a hobby that has become a driving passion.”
Note: “Feasts & Seasons: Lent and Eastertide” is currently airing on EWTN. See website, www.ewtn.com, for dates and times. DVDs of the first two shows in the “Feasts & Seasons” series, “Advent and Christmas” and “Lent and Eastertide” are also available at www.ewtnreligiouscatalogue.com. The third show, “Summer Saints,” which Bogle believes is her best yet, will begin airing in May.
EWTN Global Catholic Network, in its 28th year, is available in over 148 million television households in more than 140 countries and territories. With its direct broadcast satellite television and radio services, AM & FM radio networks, worldwide short-wave radio station, Internet website www.ewtn.com and publishing arm, EWTN, is the largest religious media network in the world.