Annual Festival Day of Saint Oliver Plunkett to take place in Drogheda on Sunday

30 Jun 2017

  • Procession to start at 3.00pm culminating in Mass at 4.00pm
  • ‘Hands-across-the-Boyne event’ embraces the Archdiocese of Armagh and the Diocese of Meath

You, or a representative, are invited to attend the annual Festival Day of Saint Oliver Plunkett.  Details:

When   Sunday 2 July.
Where  Holy Family Church, Ballsgrove at 3.00pm processing to Saint Peter’s Church, Drogheda, for Mass at 4.00pm.
In attendance Archbishop Eamon Martin, Monsignor James Carroll PP, members of the Knights of Columbanus, members of other orders as well as clergy, representatives of faith groups, pilgrims from around the country, members of the local Saint Oliver Plunkett’s scout troop and Saint Oliver Group for Peace and Reconciliation.


The 2017 procession, culminating in the concelebrated Festival Mass in Saint Peter’s, the Memorial Church of Saint Oliver Plunkett, will commemorate the 97th  anniversary of the beatification of Saint Oliver Plunkett by Pope Benedict XV on 23 May 1920, as well as the 42nd anniversary of his canonisation as a martyred saint by Blessed Pope Paul VI on 12 October 1975.  Archbishop Eamon Martin will be the chief celebrant and will preach the homily.  Music will be provided by Saint Peter’s Male Voice Choir directed by Mr Edward Holly.

One of the features of the Festival Day on Sunday will be the colourful ‘Procession of the Relics’ of Saint Oliver Plunkett.  It is a hands-across-the-Boyne event that embraces both dioceses, Meath and Armagh.


Notes for Editors

  • Archbishop Eamon Martin is Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland.  Monsignor James Carroll VF, Parish Priest of Drogheda, Co Louth, Archdiocese of Armagh, is custodian of the Shrine of Saint Oliver Plunkett.  The National Celebrations in Drogheda are organised by the Knights of Saint Columbanus and it is expected that large numbers of their members from across the country will take part this year.
  • Thousands of pilgrims visit Saint Oliver’s shrine in Saint Peter’s Church, every year, to venerate his relics and to learn about the saint’s extraordinary life and ministry.  Pilgrims pray for the sick and troubled, for family and friends.  They fittingly turn to Saint Oliver, who was martyred for his faith in a time of political, religious and social turmoil, to pray for his intercession concerning conflict areas at home and abroad.
  • Saint Oliver Plunkett was ordained Archbishop of Armagh in Ghent, Belgium, 1669.  Each year celebrations of the life of Saint Oliver also take place at his birthplace in front of the old ruined Church at Loughcrew, Oldcastle, Co Meath.  Saint Oliver, a former Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, was martyred in Tyburn, England, in 1681.  Along with Saints Patrick and Malachy, Saint Oliver is a patron saint of the Archdiocese of Armagh. 

For media contact: Catholic Communications Office Maynooth: Martin Long 00353 (0) 86 172 7678