Bishops to lead pilgrimage to Knock for televised Mass in memory of those who died during pandemic

12 Nov 2021

  • Prayers of thanksgiving will be offered for the sacrifices made by frontline workers
  • “We are acutely aware of the additional distress caused to grieving families during the pandemic” – Archbishop Martin

The Bishops of Ireland will undertake a pilgrimage to the International Eucharistic and Marian Shrine in Knock this Sunday, 14 November, to offer Mass for those who have been bereaved during the Covid-19 pandemic, and will offer prayers for the repose of the souls of those who have died during this time. The bishops’ national pilgrimage is taking place in the month of November as this is the traditional time when the Catholic Church remembers especially the faithful who have departed. 

Bishops will concelebrate this Mass in the Basilica of Our Lady of Knock and the liturgy will include prayers of thanksgiving for all those who selflessly sacrificed so much during the pandemic.

This Mass will be live-streamed at 3.00pm on and simultaneously broadcast on the RTÉ News Now digital television channel and online.

Commenting ahead of the Mass, Archbishop Eamon Martin said, “November is the month of remembrance for our loved ones who have died.  This year, in particular, we are moved by the heartbreak suffered by many thousands of families throughout Ireland who have experienced the death of parents, siblings, children and friends during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

“In planning this pilgrimage and Mass, we are acutely aware of the additional distress caused to grieving families during the pandemic. Over the past nineteen months, restrictions to protect life and health limited the number of people who could gather in support of the bereaved and curtailed the ability to offer the customary rituals surrounding death and burial. The pilgrimage of the Bishops to Knock will take place alongside memorial services for the dead that are happening in parishes across the country during November. Some families who have experienced bereavement during the pandemic will be travelling with the Bishops to Knock to represent the bereaved of Ireland”.

“I also wish to express my gratitude to the faithful for their prayers, sacrifice and perseverance during this difficult period for all of society.  While the Covid-19 virus has yet to be defeated, nonetheless this commitment, along with the sterling efforts of our clergy, religious and frontline workers, has successfully served to protect human life and health.

“I invite people to join with us – in person or online – at 3.00pm on Sunday to pray for the intentions of all affected by the pandemic and in special remembrance of all those who have died.”


  • Archbishop Eamon Martin is Archbishop of Armagh, Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Dromore and Primate of All Ireland
  • For photographs for media publication please contact John McElroy on +353 87 2416985 or [email protected]                                                        

For media contact: Catholic Communications Office Maynooth: Martin Long +353 (0) 86 172 7678 and Katie Crosby +353 (0) 86 862 3298.