I have worked with Pete Socks online for years. Pete is an example of someone who volunteered to serve the Church by writing articles on his blog and for online Catholic sites without pay for years till God opened the door to a full-time paying job creating Catholic podcasts and helping manage BreadBox Media.
He is a humble guy, was a manager at a factory, and a happily married father of five who converted to the Catholic faith in 1996. After a few years, he found himself simply going through the motions, just trudging to weekly Mass. God had other plans, though. Pete experienced a reconversion when he stumbled on a book by Father Larry Richards and then attended one of his conferences. It was a turning point. Pete had discovered the key to reviving his lackluster faith in books; he began reading voraciously, a book a week, to nourish his spirit. In 2012, he decided to start a self-hosted blog writing book reviews, writing a review each week.
Pete continues to learn the riches of our Faith through books. The passion to read has led to his ministry as a book reviewer for leading Catholic publishers. You can find his reviews, author interviews at The Catholic Book Blogger(www.catholicbookblogger.com).
A hard-working factory employee in quality control, all his writing was strictly on a volunteer basis for five years, writing for Catholic Stand and Patheos among others. Pete paid his dues by self-educating himself, learning to not only write posts but to write as a journalist. Then, in January of 2017, Sherry Brownrigg, Senior Partner of The Kennedy Brownrigg Group, hired him part-time. Pete was now officially part of the New Evangelization, dealing with a mix of clients and a diversity of projects.
Allison Gringas, from A Seeking Heart on Breadbox Media, felt God wanted her to connect with Pete once a month on her show. It was on Allison’s show that Pete got a feel for podcasts. In 2015 he had an idea to start his own podcast which eventually became The Open Book Podcast. His first obstacle was gear and money. He launched a Go Fund Me campaign asking for help. He was surprised to receive a response from Michael Novak informing Pete, “I will try to send $500 soon. You show courage and invention. God bless you for it.” As Pete observed a surprised by, Michael Novak spent a lifetime deep in the political arena, promoting Catholic social justice principles around the world, took time out to help him…..a struggling blogger…make a difference. He sent that check and bolstered Pete’s resolve. Pete still uses the gear purchased with his donation and those of others to record his Breadbox Media show Off the Shelf. Pete wrote an article about his experience with Michael Novak in an interview with him- The Ambassador, Michael Novak, Lent a Hand
Surprised by God: Full-time for God
In May 2017, after being offered full-time work with Sherry Brownrigg, Pete was finally able to work full-time for God. He left his factory job as a quality control technician, after working there for 20 years. It was a bold move but all in God’s timing because he was burned out from dealing with complaints from demanding big companies and coping with the secular environment. Pete has also recently been named Managing Partner of Breadbox Media (www.breadboxmedia.com). A veteran broadcaster, Leo Brown, started Breadbox Media after a long career in radio.
Pete’s vision for Breadbox Media is that it will be the place to get Catholic and spiritual content in podcast form. He recently finalized a deal that brings Catholic Answers Live’s podcasts to Breadbox Media and has the final thumbs up from John Michael Talbot who will host his own show. Rod Bennet from Catholic Answers hosts a show called The Popcorn Cathedral which reviews movies. Bill Snyder brings his podcast Young Catholic’s Respond, guiding young Catholic’s into a closer relationship with God. Father Nicholas Blackwell (The Frank Friar), Lisa Hendey, Sonja Corbitt, Allison Gingras, and Chuck & Ann Fulkerson have all joined the expanding offerings as well. So basically, Breadbox Media is to be an all-encompassing channel that is home to a wide variety of Catholic podcasts across the entire spectrum of Catholicism. It will feature people from the right, left and middle of Catholicism.