The Angelus

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For other uses, see Angelus (disambiguation).

The Angelus is an Irish audial and televisual institution. On radio[1] they are broadcast at 12:00 and 18:00 every day.[2]

Radio Éireann first broadcast The Angelus on 15 August 1950. Minister of the Department of Posts and Telegraphs Leon Ó Broin and Archbishop of Dublin John Charles McQuaid had discussed the original idea in the late 1940s.[3] The bells were first (and still are) recorded from St Mary's Pro-Cathedral,[4] although initially broadcast live.[3]

The broadcast of the Angelus by RTÉ has been called into question from time to time.[5][6][7] A number of religious faiths outside Catholicism notably the Church of Ireland, have called for its continuation.[8]

Television format[edit]

Televised programming began at Telefís Éireann's launch. Images shown were pictures of Annunciation.[3] More recently, it showed "a number of people of varying gender and ages pause to pray at the sound of the bell".[9]

2009 relaunch[edit]

From 21 September 2009, RTÉ Television relaunched The Angelus broadcast before RTÉ News: Six One.[4] It features seven different editions, with seven respective people for each one.[10] Featured people include a chemist from Finglas, a mother from Sixmilebridge, grandparents feeding swans in Shannon, a fisherman from Enniscorthy and an office worker from Zambia at her office near the Phoenix Park.[11] The one-minute feature attracts an average audience of 318,000.[4] It was developed by Kairos Communications.[11]


  1. ^ Hegarty, Shane (26 September 2009). "A joyous moment". The Irish Times. Retrieved 2009-10-04. 
  2. ^ Kenny, Mary (23 September 2009). "The angelus rings on". The Guardian. Retrieved 2009-10-04. 
  3. ^ a b c "Irish Public Service Broadcasting - 1950s: Broadcast of the Angelus". RTÉ Libraries and Archives. Retrieved 2009-10-04. 
  4. ^ a b c McGarry, Patsy (19 September 2009). "Angelus undergoes revamp but gongs remain the same". The Irish Times. Retrieved 2009-10-04. 
  5. ^ Sectarian ring of the Angelus, Wesley Boyd, The Irish Times, 3 March 2002, retrieved 24 April 2009
  6. ^ Learning the lessons from Ferns, The Irish Times, 10 October 2005, retrieved 24 April 2009
  7. ^ Angelus criticised as `wildly divisive', The Irish Times, 5 May 1998, retrieved 24 April 2009
  8. ^ "Future of Angelus on RTÉ debated". Irish Emigrant. 25 March 2002. Retrieved 2009-10-04. 
  9. ^ Collins, Dan (23 September 1998). "Angelus will sound the same but look different". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 2009-10-04. 
  10. ^ "RTÉ Launches a New Version of The Angelus". RTÉ Press Office. 21 September 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-04. 
  11. ^ a b Cooney, John (22 September 2009). "Angelus rings the changes with new views of life". Irish Independent. Retrieved 2009-10-04. 

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