DAILY CATHOLIC   Monday, March 30, 1998   volume 9, no. 63



Mass Appeal should be reserved only for the Mass at The Mass site

     During Holy Week and every week of the year a site like THE MASS is an integral part of our daily lives. This one we review today is run by St. Ann's Media which is conducted by the Passionist Priests out of the National Shrine of Saint Ann's Basilica in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Since the mid-50's they have been broadcasting a Mass, first locally and then internationally on the Odyssey Network, which is a far cry from EWTN but still affords some Catholicism is a vast desert of other religions, many of which promote new ageism and eastern mysticism. This connection is the one negative against this site because they sponsor a Prayer Line which is very good, but the listing of "other prayer pages" for Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Shinduism, Baha'i, etc. is very, very disturbing. Nonetheless, one can skip this entirely and go to the Daily Mass page which is excellent. It includes a meditation for the day and the entire readings and Psalms for that day. It is simple and comprehensive and we will be linking the Daily Mass page to our current LITURGY section to make it more convenient for readers to read all the readings. They have a group of Passionists who provide daily homilies as well. They also have the capability for audio homilies which can be very inspiring, the problem is when we clicked on we got the homily for Labor Day. Not exactly timely. The site is headed by Father Peter Grace, C.P. and assisted by Father Richard Nalepa, C.P. with the site maintained by lay man Terry Marcheona. The site loads very, very quickly with very few graphics and simple listings of links. They offer a full liturgical calendar by month and one can get ahead of the season in anticipating future liturgical dates since they provide a two to three month advance. They also provide the petitions for the day in text and audio and a prayer request line where one can submit their prayer requests which will be placed on the altar during Mass.

      One of the things that did surprise us was there was no video since they specialize in video taping the Mass on the satellite. It would be an ideal situation even though it could only be for edification and not fulfilling any type of obligation since a televised or "videoed" Mass is not considered the same as attendance at Mass and therefore, especially on Sundays and Holy Days, does not fulfill the requirement. There is a section on St. Ann's Basilica itself and this beautiful edifice would be ideal for showing the Mass on a special "Mass cam" if that were possible. They offer Mass and Prayer Enrollment Cards as well as a line of gift items available through St. Ann's Media. In addition, they have an interesting sidebar on recently beatified Blessed Cyprian Michael Iwene Tansi who the Holy Father beatified a few weeks ago in Nigeria with links to the saint-to-be's own home page which are all provided by Fr. Tansi's monastery in England. Overall, the St. Ann's Media sight's strong point is the Daily Mass liturgy and the audio homilies and we would have awarded a much higher rating had they not included not only non-Catholic links, but non-Christ-oriented links. That is something we hope dearly they will change in the future for, other than that and the fact they need to update the audio homilies, it is a very good sight that can compliment everyone's day. Especially during Holy Week this is a most helpful sight to keep us all in the spirit of the Passion. Therefore, for the sake of the Mass, we award St. Ann's Media the "Golden Chalice Award" and confer ONE Hail Mary to this site which can be so much more if they will only eliminate the negatives (non-Christian links) and explore and expand the positives, for after all, Mass appeal should be reserved only for the Mass.