I want to thank each of you for supporting the Grand Annual campaign and for the nice messages which many of you have sent along with your pledges.
It is with some level of sadness that I report that Father Joe Connolly, SVD passed away last Saturday, August 10th. His Funeral mass was celebrated at Holy Family in Duxbury on August 17th. His obituary was emailed to those on our email list. Fr. Joe celebrated Mass here for over fifteen years until cardiac issues prevented him from doing so. When I would visit him he would tell me how much he missed each of you, but kept you in his priestly prayers. Our sympathies go out to the Miramar community, and our parish will celebrate a Memorial Mass for the repose of his soul.
The last projector has been installed in the chapel, and the small broadcast livestream system has been set up in the choir loft. This past week I and two others received training on the livestream software, with more training to follow. We are still livestreaming from the old system, and hope to go live on the new system come Labor Day weekend. This technology is going to allow us to place small pre-taped messages on the streamed Mass. The MVIX digital signage software is also being installed, and this will permit us to preload Catholic content which can be shown prior to daily Mass as well as during the day; we also will be able show the content throughout the weekend Masses.
Our parish is in the forefront of bringing the local church into the digital world. I realize some will say “why do we need to do this?” Two reasons: first, the younger generation – those thirty and under – live principally in a digital world, accessing most of their knowledge and information from digital means. We are much more likely to catechize them through their digital world – it will be this technology that eventually draws them to the Eucharist. Studies show a dramatic increase of young people who are called the ‘nones,’ meaning no religious affiliation and little in the way of a relationship with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. This group is also seeing unprecedented levels of loneliness. Exposing them to the Life of Christ and helping them develop a personal relationship with Christ will improve their lives and diminish this sense of being alienated from others.
Let’s face it folks, Digital Media has replaced the old model of a youth group room in the rectory or church basement! The second reason is that there is a shift away from Broadcast media (ABC, NBC, CBS) to streaming media (Apple, Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, Roku) which is called ‘cord cutting’, ditching expensive cable for cheaper streaming. We will see baby boomers do this in larger number over the next five years. We need to be that digital format. As it is presently, those who cut the cord no longer can access their favorite Catholic broadcast channels. Those channels will need to make the transition to the new format as well as the existing ones we watch on cable.
I want to thank each of you for supporting the GRAND ANNUAL campaign and for the nice messages which many of you have sent along with your pledges. I realize this new technology requires a little bit of faith, but come September you will see the direction we are headed. Next time we have a blizzard or dangerous Nor’easter I hope you will access our website at www.stanns.net and click on our live stream that Sunday at 10:00am. You will see a professionally televised Mass with three different camera angles, beginning with bumpers (lead in messages, explaining in a few sentences what each reading) along with excellent audio sound. Longer term we will be archiving the homilies and adding other content such as Catholic travelling prayers, and developing a system whereby you could put in key words or subject and be connected to helpful video content.
Presently we are in need of volunteers to help us with streaming the Mass, and assisting in helping with the content we put up on the projectors (i.e. readings, lyrics and prayers). If we do this correctly we will be able to help those who attend funerals to be able to look up at the screens and follow the prayers throughout the Mass. This would be a great way to show a higher level of hospitality to our guests. Please either see me or Catherine Rein after Mass, or call the office.