More good news! Many of you have asked when our Shine TV Mass will be back. It resumes this coming Sunday 7 March, the Third Sunday in Lent. Shine TV will broadcast Mass at 2pm on free-to-air TV Channel 25 and Sky Channel 201. This Sunday, Monsignor David Tonks will lead us in prayer from St Joseph's Church, Takapuna.
Previously, all Shine TV Masses were from Auckland Diocese, which was able to set up the required cameras and other technology quickly. From now on, though, the Mass will rotate around our other dioceses as well as coming from Auckland.
The Shine Mass was started last year because the nationwide and later regional Covid-19 lockdowns meant Mass was unable to be held in local churches. In Alert Level 4, religious services are forbidden because of the total lockdown at that level. In Level 3, Mass is impractical because there is a limit of 10 on gatherings. Even under Level 2, which allows gatherings of 100, many Masses can't be held because many more people attend, especially on weekends.
This week, as everyone knows, Auckland is back in Level 3 (which means no public Mass is possible) while the rest of the country is in Level 2 (which has led many but not all parishes either to cancel Mass or find ways to limit the numbers attending to 100.
While many parishes and all dioceses started live-streaming Mass on the internet when the first lockdown began almost a year ago, some parishioners do not have internet connections, so the Shine Mass on free-to-air television proved valuable.
We are being frequently told that many older parishioners without the internet really enjoy being able to watch the Shine Mass and say their responses, while others who are less mobile and particularly worried about Covid-19 found Shine is a great way to "get to Mass" without leaving the safety of their homes.
Please pass this news on to friends and family who do not have internet access and thus won't be reading it. Kia kaha!