(Dundalk, Ireland) New figures show that Irish Redemptorists’ online traffic is booming during the Covid-19 shutdown. Statistics for the past four weeks indicate that huge numbers of people are going online every day to access liturgies and other resources offered by the Redemptorists.
During the first three weeks of April, more than a quarter of a million people worldwide spent 160,000 hours following live streams from the Redemptorist churches in Belfast, Limerick and Dundalk. Posts on Redemptorist Facebook pages reached more than half a million people, generating almost 200,000 engagements, in the month from 24 March 2020.
These viewing figures are unprecedented. Even though church buildings are closed, Redemptorists in Ireland are reaching far more people than at any time in the past. From an average of less than a thousand hits a day before the lockdown, Mount St Alphonsus’s live stream in Limerick has surged to more than 7000 hits daily. On Divine Mercy Sunday (19 April 2020), more than 12,000 visitors tuned into the liturgies from Mount St Alphonsus – a record number.
“Though we cannot wait for our churches to open again, it is clear that our online presence has provided support and spiritual nourishment to a lot of people,” says Limerick-based Redemptorist, Gerard Moloney. “The challenge will be how to continue to engage with and build up this virtual community once this crisis is over.”