The Daily Mass Online apostolate was begun primarily to serve the needs of the parishoners of the ORC Sussex Mission which, when it began, had no home to offer accessible public worship. The Mass was originally broadcast from the domestic Oratory of the Provost of the Brighton Oratory and now is broadcast through the week from the domestic Oratory and at weekends from the Mission’s hired Mass centre. By the very fact of its being broadcast over the internet, the viewing audience began very quickly to include the housebound and those unable because of work to attend Mass on holy days of obligation as well as many overseas viewers wanting to view the Traditional Latin Mass.
The Daily Mass Online apostolate of the Brighton Oratory has recently collated statistics for the past four years of the project. Since broadcasting began on the Feast of the Assumption, 15th August 2008 up to Saturday, 2nd March 2013, a total 81’988 people have viewed the live broadcast or archived episodes of the Daily Mass Online; giving averages of 49 people PER DAY, or 1’490 per month, or 17’885 per annum. The statistics were collated from the three websites of the apostolate, DailyMass.co.uk, and the Daily Traditional Latin Mass channels UstreamsTV and BlipTV, though viewers also view the recordings via distribution outlets including Facebook and iTunes. The total viewing figure includes both regular and “one-off” viewers. There is no charge to view the Daily Mass Online and the apostolate relies solely on donations, which somewhat limits the technical aspect of the broadcast to the most basic tools – a small laptop and wifi!
The Daily Mass Online broadcasts the Traditional Latin Mass i.e. the Tridentine Rite of 1570 codified by Pope, St Pius V with lections in English and a daily homily; Sunday to Friday at 0830 and on Saturdays at 1030. The broadcast includes an Act of Spiritual Communion for those watching online. The broadcast is generally a Low Mass offered with some reflective music or hymns to accompany and cover the Offertory and Communion. Occasionally special services are also broadcast, most recently the Ember Saturday Mass broadcast included the Ordination of a new Deacon for the Sussex Mission. To assist viewers a daily blogpost containing the Propers i.e. readings and prayers of the Mass is published daily on the Carissimi blog with introductory notes about the liturgy including biographical details of the saints and commentary on the readings.
In Advent and again now in Lent an additional programme called “The Vigil” is broadcast on Saturday evenings from 6pm. The service is in a more informal format designed to include live audience interaction via text and email from the DailyMass.co.uk website. “The Vigil” essentially has three components, beginning with reflections on the Sunday lections, intercessions where prayer requests from viewers are prayed for and votive lights lit before an icon of the Mother of God and concluding with Holy Communion from the Tabernacle for those present and an Act of Spiritual Communion for those watching. Reflective music, traditional hymns and simple repetitive chants (e.g. Taizé) are used to enable those at home to participate in the act of worship.
The Daily Mass Online apostolate, though primarily founded to serve the Old Roman Catholic faithful locally has become a spiritual tool for many others, its audience is known to include a regular viewer from “somewhere in the Vatican City State” and viewers from even further afield such as the Philippines and South America and even a Methodist minister and Christians of other denominations and traditions. It has also borne fruit in the development and encouragement of vocations and as a form of encouragement and comfort for dispersed Old Roman Catholics throughout the world, many of whom appreciate being able to see and hear a colleague and a bishop (i.e. the regular celebrant Msgr Lloyd is Metropolitan of the ORC Province of Europe) on a daily basis preaching the Gospel and offering Mass. For a small denomination with communities spread throughout the world, this daily example of commitment and fidelity in service is greatly appreciated.
The Daily Mass Online is still, to this day, the only daily broadcast of Mass from the European continent.
Daily Mass Sunday – Friday 0830, Saturday 1030 “The Vigil” 6pm. Traditional Holy Week liturgies (pre’55 rubrics) for Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday and Easter Sunday at 0830 (Tenebrae at 1700)