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(LifeSiteNews) — A press release issued by daa, the operator of Dublin Airport in Ireland, has announced that while the company has not canceled the annual blessing of the planes ceremony, non-Catholic “blessings” will be allowed as well.

As previously reported by LifeSiteNews, the 76-year-old tradition of blessing planes at the airport was in danger of being scrapped after John Hamill, an atheist provocateur in the country, requested in January that a “non-religious” blessing also be permitted.

After Hamill’s request, the airport announced it was conducting a “review” of the “safety protocols” for those who would perform the blessing. The airport’s social media team insisted that new regulations are what prompted the change and not, as editor John McGuirk argued, a request for a non-religious blessing.

Father Des Doyle has been the chaplain at the Dublin Airport since 2008. He blessed planes most recently in December. In the past, he would walk on the tarmac for the ritual, which has been held every year since 1967 on Christmas Day when the airport is closed.

According to daa’s press release, Doyle obtained the necessary police clearance to conduct this “cherished part of his ministry.” It also announced a new approach to blessings, suggesting that Hamill’s complaint had succeeded in pressuring the airport.

“daa is aware that other groups are also interested in performing blessings. daa respects all faiths and provides a multi-faith prayer room in Terminal 2 at Dublin Airport, providing people of all faiths, religions and spirituality with a sanctuary to retreat to when visiting the airport,” it reads.

“daa is happy to engage with any other faith representative that wishes to perform religious or secular blessings at the airport. These will take place landside in accordance with the aviation regulator’s security protocols.”

Dublin Airport is Ireland’s busiest airport with an average of 30 million passengers per year.  Founded in 1940, it has an on-site Catholic Church called Our Lady Queen of Heaven that opened in 1964. The blessing of the planes has taken place annually since 1947.

Aer Lingus was founded by the Irish government and is now owned by International Airlines Group. The blessing originally took place each summer for the company’s planes, which are named after saints. A mini documentary explaining the unique nature of the blessing was released in the early 1960s.

Of Ireland’s five million residents, roughly 70 percent are Catholic. The country recently voted in a landslide to reject amending the Irish Constitution to redefine family, marriage, and motherhood. In 1920, Pope Benedict XV named Our Lady of Loretto as the patron saint of aviation.