Vatican stamps honour Ireland's hosting of congress


SPECIAL EDITION postage stamps have been issued by the Vatican to commemorate the 50th International Eucharistic Congress held in Dublin last June.

The Vatican’s philatelic and numismatic office has produced 12 stamps for 2012, two of which are described as being “distinctly Irish”. A 75 cent stamp features a Celtic cross from the Rock of Cashel in Tipperary, while a €1 stamp depicts the Ardagh Chalice, found in west Limerick in 1868, with a host floating above it.

Fr Peter Murphy, a stamp collector and a Dublin priest who took part in the congress, said the stamps drew on the depth of Irish Catholic faith and Irish history.

“The Eucharistic Congress promoted an awareness of the central place of the Eucharist in the life and mission of the church, helping to improve understanding and celebration of the liturgy, and drawing attention to the social dimension of the Eucharist.

“The images on these unique postage stamps pay tribute to the land of Ireland, and the sharing of the Gospel in Ireland.”

The stamps can be bought at the Vatican Post Office in Saint Peter’s Square and from the philatelic and numismatic office website at vaticanstate.vaby following the links to the post office section.

Other stamps issued this year commemorated the 4th centenary of the death of Fr Christopher Clavius and the 600th anniversary of the birth of St Joan of Arc.