20 Questions with Fr. Ralph Intranuovo, SCJ

Favorite color? What makes you happy? What are you good at? What is your greatest fear… “Twenty Questions” is a regular feature in which SCJs and those with whom they minister and collaborate share a bit about themselves in an informal Q&A. Participants are given the same list of questions and are invited to answer as many as they would like.

Fr. Ralph Intranuovo, SCJ, is retired and a member of the Sacred Heart Community in Pinellas Park, FL.


Q: Where were you born and raised? Describe your family.

FR. RALPH: I was born in Brooklyn, NY and raised there.  My parents were Italian immigrants who came here when they were young; my mother was seven and my father was 16. I had five sisters and four brothers. Myself and two sisters survive today.

Q: What is your favorite book or movie?

FR. RALPH: Movie:  Silence of the Lambs  Book: AWARENESS by  Anthony DeMello

Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world post-pandemic – without concern about the expense – where would you go and why?

FR. RALPH: If I were able  I would go to Japan. I’m fascinated by their culture, especially their hospitality and ancestor worship. I would also like to go to Egypt.

Q: What are you good at?

FR. RALPH: I used to be very good at racquetball and so-so at tennis.  I am good at history trivia and word games.

Q: What is your favorite color?

FR. RALPH: Cobalt blue.

Q: Do you have any hobbies or pastimes? If so, what are they and how did you get interested in them?

FR. RALPH: Mentioned above (“what I am good at”), but I also enjoy reading about politics, archaeology and new ideas in science. I like to surf on YOUTUBE for historical trivia and old cultural habits.

Q: What is your favorite food?

FR. RALPH: Pasta e Fagiole (beans and macaroni), an Italian peasant dish

Q: What is your least favorite chore?

FR. RALPH: That would be getting rid of stuff I don’t need.

Q: Who — living or deceased — do you most admire and why?

FR. RALPH: When I was in a Doctor of Ministry program there was a professor who was a great teacher who had a hobby of composing music. He could cut through trivia and  get to the core of psychodynamic issues.

Q: What would surprise people to learn about you?

FR. RALPH: I am sometimes  lazy. I have to force myself to get motivated.

Q: What skill or talent would you like to have that you do not? Why?

FR. RALPH: I would like to be able to read musical notation. I want to learn more and more about music.

Q: As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

FR. RALPH: I remember writing in my grade school graduation book wanting to be a radio announcer. That amuses me now.

Q: What makes you happy?

FR. RALPH: Listening to really good conversation (not necessarily my own), listening to favorite music, seeing a good movie I have not seen before. The last good movie I saw was Fargo. I like reading a thriller murder mystery.

Q: What is your greatest fear?

FR. RALPH: Violence of any kind, physical or verbal.

Q: What trait or habit do you dislike in yourself?

FR. RALPH: Criticism and being judgmental of myself or others.

Q: What trait or habit do you dislike in others?

FR. RALPH: Name-calling, especially when practiced by adults.

Q: List three words that describe you.

FR. RALPH: Sometimes too intense, seeing humor in daily situations, empathy.

Q: How did you come to know of the Priests of the Sacred Heart (Dehonians) and what interested you about them?

FR. RALPH: I saw an ad in a Catholic newspaper about adult vocations (I was 39 at the time). I answered it and the long story follows.

Q: Do you consider yourself a Dehonian? If so, what does that mean to you?

FR. RALPH: It means having a caring heart, especially toward those who seem to be lost or unaffirmed.

Q: What changes, adaptations or insights do you expect to stay with you from the pandemic? In other words, how do you expect to be changed by COVID-19?

FR. RALPH: After some months of forced inactivity, getting to be at ease with less activity, searching more depth in spiritual reading and practice. Letting go of left brain concerns.