Babara Garro pulls inspiration for her new radio show from her published books (Emily Benson photos)
Babara Garro pulls inspiration for her new radio show from her published books (Emily Benson photos)
1
2
What would you do if you had five minutes with Jesus? Well, here’s your chance.

Barbara Garro, parishioner at St. Clement’s Church in Saratoga Springs, will host ALIVE Radio Network’s newest show: “5 Minutes with Jesus.” The local Christian radio broadcasting network kicks off its latest series on Wednesday, June 30, at 7:25 a.m. The show will run at that time Monday through Thursday and on Sunday mornings and can be heard throughout the Capital Region on WHAZ (1330 AM), WBAR (94.7 FM), WMYY (97.3 FM), WHAZ (97.5 FM) and MNV (104.1 FM).

Each episode will focus on the parables of Jesus, diving into the meaning behind the message and how they can be applied to life today. Garro is no stranger to Jesus’ parables and has written several books on each of them, but still believes there’s always something new that can be derived from Jesus’ words.

“After 2,000 years (the parables) are still relevant,” Garro said. “They speak to the individual presently in their lives.”

Born and raised Catholic, Garro has “been following Jesus’ mission” all her life and donned many hats along the way: she was a risk manager for Comcast Corporation; in the 1990s, she wrote and produced for the children’s show “The Mother Goose & Gander Show;” and she’s published books, held art shows for her work as a painter and performed in local theater as a singer.

“I’m never going to stop,” Garro said. “I’m going to be 104 and I’m going to be doing something!”

Having a radio show has been a dream of Garro’s for decades, and at 78, she’s excited to get it started: “I think God prepared me for this moment,” she said.

“The goal of the show is to leave listeners with a daily lesson and to take action,” Garro explained. “If you don’t grow your faith it diminishes ... I’m just attached to doing Jesus’ mission. He’s the star of the show.”

Growing up in Camden, N.J., Garro’s faith was always strong, guided mostly by her Catholic parents: “I come from a family of faith,” she said. Anytime Garro came to her mother with a worry, her mother’s first suggestion was always the same: pray about it.

“My mom would say, go upstairs and pray,” she recalled. “It was tough at a young age to pray” but the practice served her well.

Garro also spent a number of her childhood days in bed, bogged down by allergies, asthma and other illnesses. She would often spend her days reading, writing and making art to pass the time. One day, Garro decided to write her first book: “I’m 8 years old, and I’m writing my biography,” she said. “I wrote eight pages and couldn’t write anymore, and I thought, well, I guess I need to live a little more!”

After high school, Garro went right into the working world. Her father pushed her to pursue an education but she never understood why. “You know how kids are stupid?” Garro laughed. “Well, I didn’t want to go to college, I wanted to work.” She got married and had two daughters, but later got divorced. Through all her hardships, her faith never wavered.

Then in 1989, Garro was in a life-altering accident. “I fell off a five-foot platform,” she said. “I was unable to walk, talk, write or think straight.”
It was a pivotal moment in her life. She was determined to get her old self back but started questioning what she would do once she did: “I thought, what do I want to do with my life?” Garro said. “When I get better, what do I want to do?”

That’s when Garro started to write: she went on to publish four books covering the parables of Jesus and has written numerous books of poetry.

Through it all, she never stopped studying the Bible or learning about her faith. Garro also went back to college, earning a degree in business finance and economics and a master’s degree in liberal studies from Empire State College. 

“I believe God had me do all these things to prepare me for the radio show,” Garro said. “I’m excited about this and I just hope it brings people to the Lord.”