RTÉ to air daily Mass and minority faith messages during the Covid-19 emergency
In response to coronavirus (Covid-19)-related restrictions on public gatherings, RTÉ will start to air Mass every weekday at 10.30am from St. Eunan’s and St. Columba’s Cathedral, Letterkenny, on RTÉ News Now.
Starting this Thursday, the broadcasts will continue at least until March 29, when current public health measures will be reviewed by the Government.
Mass will be followed each day by a short religious message from representatives of Ireland’s other faith communities and Christian denominations.
RTÉ’s head of religious content Roger Childs said: “We are aware that, either through self-isolation or Government restrictions, many people are unable to come together to worship at precisely the time when they feel most in need of community, comfort, encouragement and prayer. Facilitated by the web-streaming service churchservices.tv, the Bishop of Raphoe Dr. Alan McGuckian and Cathedral Administrator Monsignor Kevin Gillespie have kindly agreed to celebrate a Mass every weekday morning, which RTÉ is very happy to share with viewers as part of our commitment to public service during the current emergency. We want people of all faiths to know that RTÉ is with them in spirit.”
Because so many churches have taken the decision to cease public worship during the current crisis, to minimise social contact and contagion, Bishop Alan McGuckian has promised that priests in his diocese will continue to celebrate Mass for a virtual congregation.
RTÉ will also continue to broadcast a diverse range of Christian worship every Sunday at 11am on RTÉ One, RTÉ Radio 1 Extra/LW252 and in Irish on RTÉ Raidio Na Gaeltachta.
The national broadcaster will also mark the Jewish festival of Passover with a short programme on RTÉ One at 5.35pm on April 5 and will celebrate the Sikh festival of Vaisakhi on RTÉ One at 5.35pm on April 11 at 5.35pm.
RTÉ News Now can be accessed on Saorview (channel 21), Sky (521), Virgin Media (200), Eir (517) as well as via the RTÉ Player, the RTÉ News Now app and via RTÉ.ie/news. This content will also be available on the RTÉ Player, both live and on catch-up.