Assembly keynote speaker David Bisonó walks the walk he talks, excited to visit SA
Favorite saint? It varies but right now, St. Therese of Lisieux
Favorite pope? Without a doubt, St. Pope John Paul II
Favorite hobby? I love reading.
Book you are currently reading? I’m normally reading 2-3 books simultaneously. Right now I’m reading The Love That Keeps Us Sane: Living the Little Way of St. Therese of Lisieux by Marc Foley and The Story of Civilization: The Reformation (Volume 6) by Will Durant.
Favorite Food? I really don’t have a favorite food. I’m more a coffee guy. But I’ll eat anything. I’m really not picky.
Do you have any pets? A four-year-old Belgium Malinois named Mai-coh.
By Charles T. Ramirez
For Today’s Catholic
Assembly keynote speaker David Bisonó says he’s excited to visit San Antonio on Sat., Nov. 3 to share the culture of encounter with all in attendance.
“I’m really happy to be there and I can’t wait to connect with the people and to share what God has given me,” he said. “I’m praying that our Lady will intercede and that the people will receive what they need to receive in order to be effective and productive in their communities, in their parishes, and in the archdiocese.”
Bisonó, a native of Brooklyn, NY, is the creator, producer, director, and host of Too Blessed to Be Stressed, Dios Nunca Duerme, and Café Con Cristo, highly-rated Catholic programs that have showcased his magnetic, down-to-earth persona and propelled his popularity.
“I won’t start my day without the Eucharist,” said Bisonó. “That’s my first thing in the morning. If I’m going to be a model of heaven on earth, I’m going to need God’s grace, God’s mercy, God’s strength. That’s where I draw it from. I don’t draw it from my own intelligence or my own charisma, although those cooperate with God’s grace.”
Bisonó said that when he’s visiting a new city, his love for coffee leads him to local coffee shops where he can connect with people by practicing a culture of encounter.
“You just are who you are in your surroundings and the questions will come up: What do you do? Why are you here?” said Bisonó. “It’s not something that’s forced, it’s very organic.”
In one instance, Bisonó said a coffee barista asked for prayer during a particularly difficult time in her life.
“My main thing is always being intentional and being aware and present,” said Bisonó, “knowing that wherever I am, God in his grace and mercy have allowed me to be there, whether that be a bus station, a train, an airport, or a coffee shop—how can I bring this culture to this place that I’m at right now?”
Bisonó said that the theme for this year’s Assembly speaks to him in particular because of his recent reflection on the word culture.
“One of the main things in my life right now that I’m focusing on is this word ‘culture’ and what that means,” said Bisonó. “I travel extensively throughout the U.S. and Latin America and I meet with leaders and pastors and my first question is: What kind of culture do you want to see in your parish and in your community? For me, that matters because it’s not about getting together with people who share the same interests, but being with people who share the same values.”
In order to positively influence the culture, Bisonó said, one must become the culture that one wants to see.
“Many times in the church we fall into this trap where we speak about the things that we want to see without first being what we want to see,” he said. “Because when you become the culture you want to see then you actually have influence on that culture. You become an influential person.”
Experience Bisonó deliver his keynote address — Become the Culture We Want to See — live at the Assembly on Nov. 3, 2018 from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at St. Mary’s University. Register now at AssemblySA.org or call (210) 734-1911.
Look for Part II of this interview series with Bisonó in the next issue of Today’s Catholic.