Loop offers hope for the deaf

The Times reports
"…A hearing loop, typically installed on the floor around the periphery of a room, is a thin strand of copper wire radiating electromagnetic signals that can be picked up by a tiny receiver already built into most hearing aids and cochlear implants. When the receiver is turned on, the hearing aid receives only the sounds coming directly from a microphone, not the background cacophony.

“It’s the equivalent of a wheelchair ramp for people who used to be socially isolated because of their hearing loss,” said David G. Myers, a professor of psychology at Hope College in Holland, Mich., who is hard of hearing. “I used to detest my hearing aids, but now that they serve this second purpose, I love the way they’ve enriched my life.”

After his first encounter with a hearing loop at an abbey in Scotland, where he was shocked to suddenly be able to understand every word of a service, Dr. Myers installed a loop in his own home and successfully campaigned to have loops installed at hundreds of places in Michigan, including the Grand Rapids airport and the basketball arena at Michigan State University. …"

Anyone know of any parishes using this device at Masses?

My parish has this, and has for as long as I can remember (joined in 2001 at the age of 6). The church was wreckovated sometime in the '90s (I think :shrug:) so the system was probably introduced about that time.

Thanks for the info about how the system works; I had often wondered why it was called a loop system.

Thanks for responding. What’s your sense of how the older/hearing impaired respond to its availability? Of course, you couldn’t know, but I wonder if those people are more likely to attend mass because they can feel a part of it.

I can’t say I’ve ever been aware of being in a place which has one, but they’re not new technology. Most ordinary land line telephones (not cordless) have one in the earpiece as far as I know.

As for hearing clearly, I find subtitles on television very useful as I’m hard of hearing, although my wife doesn’t like subtitles (her hearing is very good). I can wear headphones and use a radio or infrared transmitter, but after while you get a bit irritated with the pressure of the headphones on your ears (the very lightweight ones that telephonists wear are not strong enough for hearing impaired people).

So anything that helps is worthwhile. I remember listening through headphones at my original Presbyterian Church (a short lived project unfortunately, as they cut through the wires for some reason), and I was almost shocked by the quality of the sound compared to what I normally heard. In particular I remember the beautiful singing voice of one of the singers.

So anything that helps people to hear better should be included. I’ve been going to masses for some years now, and I still have trouble with some of the responses, as when the congregation says them together, they’re just one big mumble.

I’m sorry to hear that Bob Crowley :frowning: :crying:

I’m not. I think as with anybody else with a disability, injury or illness, you learn to accept it after a while. It’s just part and parcel of everyday life.

On a similar line, It’s like the reality of the spiritual world, an uncomfortable concept to or not recognised by agnostics or atheists. It comes as a shock the first few times the spiritual world makes it very clear it exists, but after a while you just accept it, as much as the normal physical world.

Or as one missionary put it, in contrasting the Western and Eastern minds, if you were at a party in the West, and said to a Westerner, “This room is full of spirits”, they’d give you a sickly smile, say, “Well, that’s nice!” and quickly move on to somebody else. But if you said it to someone from the East, they’d wonder why you bothered. It would be like saying the sky is blue.

You get used to it after a while, to the point where you don’t know any different.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.