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Taoiseach Enda Kenny among those to welcome first chartered transatlantic pilgrimage flight to Knock

NewsBy Neil Fetherston
The Taoiseach will be at Knock to welcome the Aer lingus flight. FILE PHOTO
The Taoiseach will be at Knock to welcome the Aer lingus flight. FILE PHOTO

Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Aer Lingus Chief Executive Stephen Kavanagh were among those who the welcomed the first chartered transatlantic pilgrimage flight by Aer Lingus to Ireland West Airport in Knock this morning.

The plane flying from New York's JFK Airport arrived shortly after 7.30am, 20 minutes earlier than expected, with 178 pilgrims on board led by the Archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan.

Almost 4,000 people will attend a special midday mass in the newly refurbished Basilica at Knock, which will be broadcast live on RTÉ One television at 12pm and RTÉ Player.

It will be celebrated by Parish Priest of Knock Fr Richard Gibbons and the Archbishop of New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan.