Priest flies statue of saint over town to give socially distanced blessing

An Italian priest has decided to get on a plane with a statue of a Christian saint to carry out a socially distanced blessing for the residents.

Priest Gaetano Amore, 47, was filmed flying over the town of Polignano a Mare in the metropolitan city of Bari, southern Italy’s Apulia region on Monday, June 15.

He brought along the town’s patron saint, Saint Vito, to give blessings as the religious parades which were organised for the day had been banned by the country’s coronavirus regulations.

Footage shows priest Amore, also known as “Mister Volare” [Mister Fly], sitting at the front of the Socata TB-9 light single engine piston aircraft with the statue of Saint Vito being secured at the back.

The statue is positioned in a way that it can look down over the residents through a window.

Prayers can be heard in the background and local residents were quick to thank the priest for the blessing on social media.

A local resident said: “Thanks Don Gaetano, this is beautiful, Saint Vito protecting all of us, amen.”

A second one added: “There are no words to thank you for this beautiful gesture… thanks.”

“Saint Vito not only in the sea but also in the air, thanks Don Gaetano,” a third commented.

Priest Gaetano Amore gave blessings to the residents from the plane

According to the latest figures from the Johns Hopkins University, Italy has registered 237,828 cases of Covid-19 and 34,448 related deaths.

In the UK, a “portable” priest drove around his neighbourhood to carry out a mobile church service to the residents during the pandemic.

Priests in Ukraine poured holy water from a truck to give blessings to stay-at-home residents.