Saturday 19 October 2019

RTE say new Angelus will 'reflect people of all faiths and none'

Topiary artist Colm Hughes is featured in the new films
Topiary artist Colm Hughes is featured in the new films

Mark O'Regan

The final knell of the bells has sounded for the traditional-style broadcast of the Angelus on RTÉ television.

It has been running for 53 years, broadly in its current format, on the national broadcaster.

But RTÉ says the time has come to introduce changes which will "reflect people of all faiths and none".

The new daily broadcast will now showcase aspiring Irish filmmakers and artists from across the country.

The Angelus has been broadcast on RTÉ television since 1962, but in recent years there have been a number of calls for it to be changed in light of evolving attitudes to religious practice.

Now, a new set of short films, commissioned from Kairos Communications following a competitive tendering process, aim to be "conducive to prayer or reflection for people of all faiths and none".

The films will feature people from all walks of life; from a sand sculptor to a carer, and from a traditional bookbinder's workshop in Athlone to a topiarist's garden in Malahide.

The six new featurettes will be shown in daily rotation.

RTÉ will also designate one slot per week, on Fridays at 6pm, as 'The People's Angelus', when it will showcase the work of aspiring filmmakers and artists in communities across Ireland.

Each filmmaker and artist will receive a "modest payment" for their work.

Submissions for the new slot ranged from animation to stills photography, and from abstract work to contemplative shots of landscape and the natural environment.

RTÉ said the makeover was needed as Ireland had "changed enormously" over the decades, and the nature of this kind of broadcast must also evolve.

Roger Childs, RTÉ genre head of religious programmes, insisted the new broadcasts would still afford people of "all faiths and none some quiet space in a hectic day-to-day world".

Irish Independent

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