The letter writer wrote: “Monsignor James Horan was without question a man of extraordinary faith, intelligence, vision, determination and courage - a man well ahead of his time. People of his calibre are so badly needed in the Ireland of today.”
In 2010 An Post indicated they would not be in a position to issue a stamp last year to mark the 100th anniversary of Monsignor Horan’s birth.
However, the then Minister fort Labour Affairs, Dara Calleary, indicated he had been given an assurance for the postal company they would consider including the stamp in their schedule this year.
This, unfortunately, is not to be and what a shame one of Ireland’s most far-sighted sons is not considered worthy of such a tribute.
The monsignor, responsible for inviting Pope John Paul II to Knock Shrine in 1979 and the driving force behind the establishment of the now highly successful Ireland West Airport Knock, deserves any honour that can be bestowed on him.
He was the driving force in getting rural communities to be believe in people power and instilling in them the courage to fight for their rights.
He transformed the Marian Shrine form a shantytown to the magnificent place of pilgrimage it is today.
He was a man of far-sighted vision who would not take no for an answer and pressed his case for the airport at the highest level.
Last week in our blast form the past photo archives we published a picture of the Knock Airport Board from 1988, a reminder of the wealth of talent he brought together to fulfil his airport dream.
Today Ireland West Airport Knock – the most successful regional airport in the country - is a glowing tribute to the determination of Monsignor Horan.
His memory must honoured and it would be fitting if An Post were to include a Horan stamp in their publishing schedule this year.
The humble Knock Parish Priest has been remembered in story and song in the musical A Wing and A Prayer.
The people of the west owe his a great debt of gratitude. He was a man before his time who knew that vital infrastructure was needed to allow the province thrive in the future.
Ireland West Airport Knock and Knock Shrine as the pillars of success within this region and will continue to contribute to our economic success in the years ahead.
Surely, it is not too much to ask that An Post would this ‘man of the people’ with a stamp of approval.
Machnamh na Seachtaine
Ná haithris gach ní dá bhfeictear duit.
Don’t tell everything you see.