ŠKODA Ireland today announced that it will be the official car partner to the World Meeting of Families 2018 and the Papal visit, later this month.
As part of the announcement, ŠKODA Ireland confirmed that when Pope Francis touches down in Dublin on the morning of Saturday, 25th of August, he will be transported to Áras an Uachtaráin (House of the Irish President) in a ŠKODA Rapid.
Four RAPID 1.0 TSI petrol vehicles have been provided as part of the Papal fleet. 182-D-9093 is the primary vehicle, which, when the digits 9093 are inverted, spells out the word “POPE“.
Each ŠKODA RAPID provided for the visit has been customised to requirements. Modified glass has been installed and each vehicle has been provided in a unique navy-blue colour as requested. Small chrome flag poles have also been installed to the passenger-side fenders, which will display the Vatican flag.
Following his meeting with the President of Ireland, Michael D Higgins, Pope Francis will be transported to Dublin Castle, where he will deliver a speech, followed by a visit to St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral and a private visit to the Day Centre for Homeless Families of the Capuchin Fathers. That evening, Pope Francis will attend the Festival of Families event at Croke Park.
On Sunday 26th August, Pope Francis will fly to Knock airport, where he will be transported to Knock Shrine. He will then return to Dublin for the World Meeting of Families 2018 Closing Mass in the Phoenix Park, marking the conclusion of his visit to Ireland.
In addition to providing transport to Pope Francis in Dublin and Knock, ŠKODA will provide logistical services to dignitaries, with a fleet of SUPERB, KAROQ and OCTAVIA vehicles.
Following the departure of His Holiness, Pope Francis’s ŠKODA Rapid, together with an additional Rapid, will be provided to a charity to be nominated by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, in accordance with the wishes of Pope Francis.
Held every three years, the World Meeting of Families is a major international event that brings together families from across the world to celebrate, pray and reflect upon the central importance of the family, as the cornerstone of our lives. Pope Francis chose Dublin to host the World Meeting of Families 2018 and, on the 21st of March this year, he confirmed he would be revisiting Dublin for the first time since he was a young priest back in 1980.