Tag Archives: Vatican Radio

Vatican Radio Christmas specials

(Source: Mauno Ritola via the WRTH Facebook page)

Vatican Radio special broadcasts on Christmas:

Saturday 24 December 2016
1600-1652 [UTC]
Mass in Chinese 5975 7200 kHz 2025-2230
Portuguese 11625 kHz Angola and Mozambique
French 6080 kHz West Africa
English 7275 kHz Central Africa
Chinese 6185 kHz China

Sunday 25 December 2016
1055-1130 [UTC]
Portuguese 21560 kHz Angola and Mozambique
French 17520 kHz West Africa
English 15570 kHz Central Africa

Live audio from S.Peter’s without any comment:

  • 9645 kHz, 11740 kHz Europe
  • 15595 kHz Near East

All from Santa Maria di Galeria.
http://www.radiovaticana.va

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Is the end near for Vatican Radio’s shortwave service?

radio_vaticano

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Andrea Bornino, for sharing the following article from espressonline.it:

Goodbye, Jesuits. Vatican Media Get a New Face and New Boss

And this with a Jesuit pope, no less. Vatican Radio will stop broadcasting on shortwave. And “L’Osservatore Romano” will also be absorbed into a single “content hub.” Under the command of Monsignor Dario Viganò

by Sandro Magister

[…]

Because in effect Vatican Radio costs a great deal. It does not run advertising, its revenues are paltry and its numerous linguistic sections push to about thirty-five the number of journalists on the payroll. The total shortfall fluctuates between twenty and thirty million euro per year.

Well then, Monsignor Viganò doesn’t want to hear about shortwave anymore. He sees it as antiquated and to be dismantled, because it has been supplanted by the web. While instead for Fr. Lombardi it continues to have an essential role “of service to the poor, the oppressed, the minorities, rather than of subjection to the imperative of the maximization of the audience.”

They are two antithetical visions. But the marching route appears to have been marked out already. In Africa, where internet access is sporadic, Viganò has announced an agreement with Facebook through which the pope’s messages will be brought to 44 countries by cell phone, through an app.

By December, in short, Vatican Radio will cease to exist as a self-contained reality. It will be incorporated into a single centralized “content hub,” or in Viganò’s words, into “a single center of multimedia production of texts, images, audiovisuals and radio podcasts in multiple languages,” beneath a single editorial leadership held by Viganò himself today and soon to be handed over to a “task force of journalists,” many of them drawn from Vatican Radio itself and adapted to the new role.[…]

Read the full article by clicking here.

I can’t quite tell if this is a news item or opinion piece.

Post readers: Have you noted other sources confirming the closure of Vatican Radio’s shortwave service?  I know this topic is certainly on the table at Vatican Radio, especially since it’s been discussed in the past.

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Vatican Radio: breaking news broken?

Pope Francis I

Pope Francis I (Photo: Vatican Radio)

A few moments ago, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina was elected Pope, becoming the first pontiff from the Americas, and taking the name Pope Francis I. When breaking news like this is happens, I often turn to shortwave radio to hear it “from the source;” what better station for news about the Papal elections than Vatican Radio? Right?

Hm. When I turned to Vatican Radio on 13.765 MHZ at 20:00 UTC today, here is what I heard:

After a little music and announcement confusion–including what sounds like at least three audio feeds coming in at once–Vatican Radio settles on an announcement program which states, in several languages, “Vatican Radio’s programming schedule is currently being modified to cover the election of the new Pope.”

It wasn’t until thirty minutes later (20:30 UTC), when the Vatican Radio service to Africa started in French on 11.625 MHz, that I heard any substantive news about the new Pope:

radio_vaticanoOf course, I can find information about the new Pope from any one of two million different online sources, but it did surprise me that Vatican Radio wasn’t better prepared for this event.  I even wondered if there was a different broadcast running on a consecutive frequency, so I checked; all were identical, however.

Still, the radio archivist in me can’t help but experience some appreciation of the confusion on the airwaves. After all, this is a genuine piece of radio history and a fascinating thirty minutes of audio in the wake of a big decision.

In my mind, I envision the Vatican Radio staff frantically stirring to assemble news–for which they had no advance notice–regarding the new Pope. No doubt, the CNNs, BBCs, and Al Jazeeras of the world had pre-prepared material on each of the papal candidates. When the white plume of smoke announcing the election was first spotted, these broadcasters were likely more than ready to pull out the appropriate material and publish.

Perhaps this is not how Vatican Radio usually operates. Indeed, I suspect their live feed of events experienced a technical difficulty which they have, no doubt, since resolved. And for what it’s worth, their website was appropriately up-to-date.

History:  sometimes bumpy, but always fascinating.  Especially on the airwaves.

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Vatican Radio: “from Short Waves to new communications strategies”

Thanks to SWLing Post reader, Mike, for the tip:

(Source: Vatican Radio)

Announcing Vatican Radio’s intention to reduce its Short and Medium Wave transmissions to most of Europe and the Americas, starting July 1st, the Director General, Fr Federico Lombardi, today spoke of what he called, “A new chapter in the history of Vatican Radio” as it evolves “from Short Waves to new communications strategies”.

[…]Webcasting and satellite transmissions, along with rebroadcasting by local, regional and national radio stations, guarantee the widest possible outreach to Vatican Radio’s programming and services. Which is why Vatican Radio believes the time has come to reduce its reliance on traditional technologies, like Short and Medium Wave broadcasts, and to develop its resources in new directions.

On July 1st, Short and Medium Wave broadcasts from Vatican Radio’s Santa Maria di Galeria Transmission Centre, to most of Europe and the Americas, will be suspended. These areas of the world are already well served by Vatican Radio’s local rebroadcasting partners and by widespread internet access to its services and language programming.

The reduction of Short and Medium Wave broadcasts to these areas accounts for about 50% of the Centre’s transmission time and will allow Vatican Radio to restructure the Centre according to more innovative technological criteria. Short Wave broadcasts will be further reduced over the next few years – but not at the expense of those poor, needy and suffering parts of the world (like Africa, the Middle East and Asia) which have no alternative means of receiving news of the Church and the voice of the Pope.

Over the next few days, Vatican Radio’s language programmes will be informing their listeners of these changes, indicating alternative ways by which traditional Short and Medium Wave users can listen and benefit from Vatican Radio’s services.

Vatican Radio’s international Short and Medium Wave broadcasts have made a priceless contribution to the history of the Church, especially in 20th century Europe where they were a source of strength and encouragement for nations oppressed by war and totalitarian regimes. As this unique service is gradually phased out, making way for new communications technologies, it is important to thank those who dedicated their hearts and minds to it for so long – and for the good of so many.

Read the full article on Vatican Radio’s website.

As Mike also pointed out, this is certainly an unwelcome development for those who promote DRM. Vatican Radio is one of the few broadcasters that uses DRM over shortwave.

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Vatican Radio to end shortwave broadcasts to Europe and Americas July 1st

This article from the Italian news source, AGI (quoted below) is brief and vague, but according to the Director of Vatican Radio, they will, “end all […] medium wave broadcasts and […] shortwave ones to most of Europe and the Americas.”

We will post more info once available–follow the tag Vatican Radio:

(Source: AGI)

Vatican City – Vatican Radio will end its short and mediumwave broadcasts on 1 July, strengthening its web service.

Spokesman of the Holy See and Director of Vatican Radio, Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, announced: “From 1 July Vatican Radio will end all its medium wave broadcasts and its shortwave ones to most of Europe and the Americas, which are regions of the world where the rebroadcasting of programmes by the local Catholic radio and internet access are more developed.”

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