Over 300 church groups unite for online Irish Blessing video

Musical project is dedicated to local healthcare workers dealing with Covid-19

A cross-denominational video involving over 300 Irish church groups has been launched on YouTube this Pentecost Sunday, dedicated to every healthcare worker on the island of Ireland dealing with Covid-19.

The Irish Blessing video is an initiative of Christians seeking God's blessing on the people of Ireland in response to the pandemic. Participants include Moya Brennan as well as the Three Priests, brothers Fr Eugene and Fr Martin O'Hagan and Fr Martin Delargy.

It has been organisd by Philip McKinley, former chaplain at Dublin City University and now in training for priesthood in the Church of Ireland, and Fr Martin Magill, parish priest at the Falls Road and Belfast.


It was Fr Magill who delivered the homily Lyra McKee’s funeral last year following her murder in Derry. Addressing the congregation of cross-community political leaders, he asked “Why in God’s name does it take the death of a 29-year-old woman with her whole life in front of her to get us to this point?”


The video includes individuals and church choirs singing the old Irish hymn ‘Be Thou My Vision’ and dedicated to their own local healthcare facility dealing with Covid-19. Included towards the end are quotations from St Patrick’s Breastplate and Irish dancing.

"They were asked to submit the videos by May 22nd," said Philip McKinley. "We could never have anticipated that we would have over 500 submissions from 300 churches and Christian organisations across Ireland. Miraculously, our team managed to include every single vocal and instrumental audio recording submitted, into the audio mix," he said.

It was all done online, he said. “None of us met physically,” he noted.

Video credits include the name of every church or Christian organisation who took part, as well as the healthcare facility each one is dedicating its blessing to.

Patsy McGarry

Patsy McGarry

Patsy McGarry is a contributor to The Irish Times