SIGN: Dublin Airport must not cancel traditional Christmas blessing of the planes

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Ireland’s busiest airport is wavering on its decision to cancel the annual Christmas “blessing of the planes,” which has taken place since 1947. 

Join us in calling on the DAA to restore priests' permission to bless the planes.

SIGN: The DAA must allow priests to give the traditional blessing of the planes on Christmas Day

After initially announcing the blessing would no longer take place, Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) is now reviewing whether it can indeed be facilitated following a strong public backlash against the cancelation.

News had broken last week that the DAA canceled the ritual, which occurs every Christmas Day when the airport is closed, following a request from atheist provocateur John Hamill to conduct a “non-religious” blessing.

The request reportedly prompted the airport to conduct a “review” of its safety protocols as priests had previously been able to walk on the tarmac to give the blessing, with a decision being made to cancel the tradition as a result of security concerns.

The DAA later insisted that “the decision had nothing to do with ‘a secular campaigner requesting the right to hold a non-religious blessing.’ It is the result of changes to security protocols around airside access,” they wrote. 

Hamill confirmed in an X post said that he did request a “non-faith blessing” and that the airport announced “all such blessings are canceled” afterwards.

Catholics however were joined by many secular voices in opposing the cancelation, with the DAA now saying it may facilitate a traditional Christmas blessing after all.

Join us in calling on the DAA to restore priests' permission to bless the planes.

SIGN: The DAA must allow priests to give the traditional blessing of the planes on Christmas Day   

LifeSiteNews reached out to Dublin Airport for comment. A spokesperson for DAA, the operator of the airport, provided the following statement:  

Due to recent changes to security protocols, airside access is now restricted to airport operations only. For this reason, non-operational activities can no longer be facilitated airside. We are currently working on a new approach to facilitating the traditional Christmas blessing of the planes at Dublin Airport. 

Aer Lingus is the flagship airline of the Irish government. The annual blessing originally took place each summer only for the company’s planes, which are named after saints. It was moved to Christmas in 1967. A mini documentary explaining the unique nature of the blessing was released in the early 1960s.  

  

Founded in 1940, Dublin airport has an on-site Catholic Church called Our Lady Queen of Heaven that opened in 1964. A “multi-faith prayer room” is also available.  

Ireland’s population is roughly 70% Catholic. In 1920, Pope Benedict XV named Our Lady of Loretta as the patron saint of aviation.

Join us in calling on the DAA to restore priests' permission to bless the planes.

SIGN: The DAA must allow priests to give the traditional blessing of the planes on Christmas Day

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Dublin airport hesitates to cancel 'blessing of planes' - LifeSiteNews