Bay Estate pupil's drawing published in book to welcome Pope Francis to Ireland

It was announced today that Pope Francis will visit Ireland this August

Tia Clarke


Tia Clarke


Aoife Murphy

Aoife Murphy had her illustration of Pope Francis published in a book called Fáilte Pope Francis

An illustration of Pope Francis by a 7-year-old primary school student from Dundalk has been published in a book called Fáilte Pope Francis.

The book features a collection of messages and pictures by primary school children from across Ireland ahead of the visit from Pope Francis this summer. 

It was officially announced today that the Pope will come to Ireland in August as part of the World Meeting of Families. 

Erin Healy and Aoife Murphy pictured with Fáilte Pope Francis 

Aoife Murphy who is in 2nd class in Scoil Mhuire na nGael in Bay Estate won a competition run by the Irish Catholic newspaper asking primary school children to draw a picture and write a letter of welcome to the Pope.

In the letter which accompanied her winning picture, Aoife offered a room in her house in Bay Estate for Pope Francis to stay during his visit.

She wrote: “When Mary and Joseph went to Bethlehem, they had nowhere to stay. Have you somewhere to stay when you come to Ireland? We have a spare room in our house and you could meet all my family and friends from school,” she wrote.

In addition to winning the competition and having her illustration published in the new book, Aoife also scooped €1,000 in prize money for her school.

Included in the book are letters, poetry, and recommendations for where Pope Francis should visit in Ireland and what he should wear or eat.

All royalties from the Fáilte Pope Francis book go to Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin.

Some other highlights from the book include the following quotes from primary school children across Ireland:

“I will say a prayer that it won’t rain in August,” Fionn (9), Doon, Co. Limerick.

“I would love it if you come to visit us here in Northern Ireland. When Pope John Paul II came to Ireland there was a lot of fighting here but not now,” Shay McAleenan (9), Rathfriland, Co. Down.

“I hope you don’t get a headache with everyone screaming!” Daniel Brogan (9), Oranmore, Co. Galway.

“I want to look after the poor and animals and want to be more like you,” Erin Healy (9), Coolock, Dublin 5.