Ecumenical Radio. (Radio History)
Absher, Frank, St. Louis Journalism Review
(Editor's note: Information for this article was provided by the St. Louis Media Archives at the St. Louis Public Library.)
In 1964, idealism prevailed in many of the nation's subcultures. People felt there could be a better world, and some took the bull by the horns to try to create it. In St. Louis' Metro East, a committed group of people sought a combination AM/FM radio license for the Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows to provide radio as a public service to the community.
Under the ownership of Our Lady of the Snows Broadcasting Corp., a reassignment was sought for the frequencies of two stations that had gone off the air in April of that year, WAMV-AM and FM. The AM station was at 1490 kHz, and the FM was at 101.1 mHz. Father Edwin Guild, O.M.I. (Oblates of Mary Immaculate), was president of the corporation. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch noted, "If successful, the new station would be the first Catholic radio station in the St. Louis area since St. Louis University sold WEW in 1955." Father Guild told the newspaper he planned a format of "60 percent classical, popular and jazz music; 14 percent religion; 13 percent news; 4 percent panels and roundtable discussions and lesser percentages of conversation, education and agriculture." There would be no commercials.
Within a month, the group announced it would no longer seek the AM license. A simulcast had originally been planned, and engineering studies showed the FM signal would provide all the coverage they needed. It was their intent to broadcast 18 hours a day Monday through Saturday and 16 hours on Sunday. The construction, equipping and operation of the station would be funded by donations from the Catholic Church.
WMRY was supposed to sign on May 9, 1966, but there was a delay when the Federal Communications Commission indicated it was not satisfied with the station's transmitter tests. …