Sunday, June 13, 2004

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I promise this is my last outsourcing post for a while

With the BLS report, I suspect I'll have little need to post on offshore outsourcing for some time -- no doubt inspiring a sense of relief among regular readers.

However, before I get off my outsourcing high horse, it's worth noting that the phenomenon is not limited to the for-profit sector -- now the Catholic Church is getting in on the act. Saritha Rai has the details in the New York Times:

With Roman Catholic clergy in short supply in the United States, Indian priests are picking up some of their work, saying Mass for special intentions, in a sacred if unusual version of outsourcing.

American, as well as Canadian and European churches, are sending Mass intentions, or requests for services like those to remember deceased relatives and thanksgiving prayers, to clergy in India....

In Kerala, a state on the southwestern coast with one of the largest concentrations of Christians in India, churches often receive intentions from overseas. The Masses are conducted in Malayalam, the native language. The intention - often a prayer for the repose of the soul of a deceased relative, or for a sick family member, thanksgiving for a favor received, or a prayer offering for a newborn - is announced at Mass.

The requests are mostly routed to Kerala's churches through the Vatican, the bishops or through religious bodies. Rarely, prayer requests come directly to individual priests.

While most requests are made via mail or personally through traveling clergymen, a significant number arrive via e-mail, a sign that technology is expediting this practice.

In Kerala's churches, memorial and thanksgiving prayers conducted for local residents are said for a donation of 40 rupees (90 cents), whereas a prayer request from the United States typically comes with $5, the Indian priests say.

Bishop Sebastian Adayanthrath, the auxiliary bishop of the Ernakulam-Angamaly diocese in Cochin, a port town in Kerala, said his diocese received an average of 350 Mass intentions a month from overseas. Most were passed to needy priests.

In Kerala, where priests earn $45 a month, the money is a welcome supplement, Bishop Adayanthrath said.

Thanks to alert reader R.S. for the link.

posted by Dan on 06.13.04 at 05:04 PM


Keep your outsourcing high horse bridled and ready to charge, even if you dismount for a little while. Those who yell in the echo-chamber of complaints for non-problems seems to just shout louder when confronted with serious challenges to their grief. Thank you for informing the rest of us.

posted by: Zachariah on 06.13.04 at 05:04 PM [permalink]

Dan, lots of Outsourcing stuff, surprisngly quiet onall the stuff coming out about Abu Ghraib. Are we gonna get your take anytime soon? Seems like it could blow into a big scandal, yet you wouldn't know here.

posted by: Jor on 06.13.04 at 05:04 PM [permalink]

Yeah, lots of outsourcing stuff but no commentary on the Cubs' woes. But you'd never know it from reading this blog.

You really need to be paying attention to my needs more, Dan.

posted by: Steve in Houston on 06.13.04 at 05:04 PM [permalink]

Dan, I enjoy the outsourcing posts. Until the economy fully recovers, the protectionists will not quit. Keep up the good work.

Most people have ignored Abu Ghraib for the past week because of Reagan. Tomorrow, the media will get back to work - you can be sure of that. But Jor, isn't it a big scandal already? It's hard to imagine that the prison abuse debacle could be any more damaging than it already is.

posted by: Tony on 06.13.04 at 05:04 PM [permalink]

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