Bishop Michael Putney's funeral and vigil will be live streamed on YouTube to ensure no-one misses out on the services, which are expected to attract thousands of mourners, reports The Townsville Bulletin.
The decision to live stream a church service to the web is a first for the Catholic Diocese of Townsville, and was made after a staggering 34,000 people viewed a post on their Facebook page announcing Bishop Putney’s death.
The 'People’s Bishop' was renowned for his passion for interacting with all sectors of the community.
He had initiated plans to live stream Mass and special services such as weddings and baptisms from Sacred Heart Cathedral to engage youth as well as rurally based and ill parishioners who found it difficult to attend church.
Instead, the technology will be used for the first time to broadcast his Vigil on Sunday and funeral on Monday.
Mourners are coming from across Australia and the world for the funeral, with Bishops from Papua New Guinea and Darwin among those already confirming their attendance.
Newly appointed diocesan administrator, Fr Mick Lowcock, said the Church community was overwhelmed and touched by the worldwide response. 'It’s extraordinary. It shows the depth and breadth of the man as a priest and bishop. I imagine there are a lot of people who he has taught, people he has associated with in and outside the diocese who may not be able to be here but in this way (live streaming) will be able to take part.'
FULL STORY Farewell bishop through YouTube (The Townsville Belletin)