A Few Words with “The Catholic Guy” Lino Rulli

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I was a LOT excited to hear about Lino Rulli’s new book, Saint: Why I Should Be Canonized Right Away. Here’s all you need to know about the book: it should carry a warning label: you WILL laugh out loud, you WILL snort your drink, you WILL find yourself referring to it and giggling all over again. It’s a little embarrassing, really.

This is a book I share with all the normal people I know. Which is you. And the lady beside you.

Though he’s not a Catholic Mom, Lino has a Catholic mom, and I thought you’d enjoy an interview. So here you go, friends, a CatholicMom.com interview with him!

Saint by Lino Rulli

Saint by Lino Rulli

You had me at the chapter on St. Mom, Lino. I also couldn’t help but notice that you dedicated Saint to your mom. So tell us why all the Catholic moms here should read your book and share it with their book clubs.

As a Catholic mom myself, I know the struggles and joys of motherhood. I’m someone you can relate to: Just an average woman doing her best to raise her children.

(Sorry, that’s my stock answer as to why all single lonely guys should read my book. It didn’t work as well in this case.)

Catholic moms should read my book to remind them that their kids may seem like little tyrants right now. They might say “Honestly, this kid – or kids – will be the end of me!” and I’m sure my mom felt that way thousands of times about me. There were times I stopped going to church, could barely avoid getting arrested, and was generally a screw off. There were days she may have felt she failed as a mom.

But if I could turn it around, and write a book devoted to my mom, then all moms should have hope in their kids!

Though you’re single, I also suspect you’re about twice as busy as most normal people. How’d you manage to juggle writing a book along with your broadcast work, your travels, and whatever else I can’t think to list?

Thanks for rubbing in that I’m single. As a side note, for those Catholic moms who have daughters in their 20s and 30s who enjoy dating guys that are twice as busy as most normal people, set me up!

As for how I juggled writing a book along with everything else I do: In the final chapter of Saint I talk about the fact that when I was in high school I…SPOILER ALERT…ran away and joined the circus. Seriously. That’s where I learned to juggle. I’m happiest when I’m juggling.

Also, I missed my deadline by about 3 months. So I didn’t juggle things all that well. Drove my publisher nuts, but hey, it finally got done!

lino2 copy

Now that you’ve written two books, tell the truth: will you be writing more? Is it worth the pain and suffering and wailing?

No, no, and no. It’s not worth any of that. It’s really hard work, and we all know hard work is for young people. I’m getting old.

Books are all about perfection, and I’m an imperfect person. I spend most of my time doing live radio. It’s spontaneous. It’s unscripted. The audience can’t wait to hear what I’ll say next…and I have no idea what I’ll say next.

That means I might make a joke, or theological point, off the cuff that’s unbelievably great. Or, as is often the case with me, a joke will fall flat or I won’t articulate something as well as I should have. With radio, I always have an excuse: blame the format. It’s live radio. I’m imperfect.

But with writing, of course, it’s the exact opposite. I had months to think about exactly how I’d say something. So if a joke doesn’t kill, or the faith isn’t perfectly articulated, I’ve got no one to blame but myself. That’s tough.

What part of Saint do you think most applies to Catholic moms? And how does that tie in with why we should join your mother in praying for your immediate canonization?

To quote, well, me: I say in the book that the best proof of God’s existence that I have is seeing my mom in prayer. When I see her praying, I just know God exists. I know that God is love. And I can understand God’s love for me based on her love for me. I have a glimpse of how much God loves me even when I don’t love myself.

I would bet, though I have no proof of this, that it’s how most people feel about their moms – even if they aren’t able to articulate it. Or don’t have a forum like a book to express themselves this way. I call my mom every day to say hi, but it doesn’t mean I’ve ever said those words to her. It took me writing a book to say it.

I’d hope that all moms know just how much their kids really do love them, regardless of our inability to always show them that love.

So if that doesn’t get you thinking I deserve canonization, nothing will!

Lino, you rub elbows with a lot of bigwigs. You’ve earned Emmys and done things that most of us can’t even imagine. And yet… here you are, a Catholic radio host and author. How does your faith tie in with your glamorous lifestyle? Where’s the balance and what advice can you give to the rest of us?

Your use of the words “glamorous” and “Lino” are firsts for me. I thank you. I must admit, however, that no matter how hard you push, I will not admit to wearing a wig. My hair is my own. Nor will I be able to share the best toupees in this business.

With that said, me giving advice about balance (considering I’m a mentally imbalanced person) is a very entertaining endeavor.

But I will say this: Life is all about priorities. It’s easy for a person to say God is number one in their lives, but do you see it lived out every day like that? If not, they’re kinda lying to themselves. And others. And God. So if we want to find balance, we have to find our priorities.

It means being comfortable with saying no. A word I hear all to often from women when I ask them out, yet they seem comfortable saying it. So the Christian has to be someone good at saying yes…and no. Saying yes to one thing means saying no to other things. Even really good things. In my case, saying yes to a book, but wanting balance in my life, means sometimes saying no to some freelance work, no to some vacations, and no to that lovely bottle of wine sitting in the kitchen. Ok, the wine usually wins.

Most of us have to work hard to find just the right balance. There are days we get it just right, and far more days where we get it completely wrong. What I do when I get it wrong is beat myself up and wallow in guilt (I am Catholic, after all), but then I ask God for forgiveness – and to straighten the path for me and help me find that right balance.

Be sure to check out our Book Notes archive.

Copyright 2013, Sarah Reinhard

One Comment
  1. October 4, 2013 | Reply

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