"First you hear muffled footsteps. Then a discreet cough. Moments later, the black-robed monks begin intoning the service that they are broadcasting to the world. In Latin. Forget the Singing Nun. The Benedictine monks of Le Barroux Abbey in the Vaucluse region of south-eastern France don't have a hit record but they do know about podcasts and streaming.
They have taken the unusual step of distributing their religious offices on the internet. The idea came from worshippers from outside the monastery, known as oblates, who wanted to feel connected to the abbey's spiritual life, says Abbot Dom Louis-Marie. "So we looked into broadcasting via the internet. We decided to do it because it didn't involve any extra work for us."
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