Biker enthusiasts see riding their motorcycle as a spiritual experience, gathering every year for a ceremony where their bike is blessed by a priest to ensure its safe ride for the next season.
After cycling thousands of miles, they reached New Rochelle. Fuller Center of Greater New York City CEO Jim Killoran welcomed them warmly, promising not to turn anyone away from engaging with the hands-on work they perform daily.
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Blessing of the Bikes
As many cyclists know, riding a bicycle can be more than just transportation: it can be an adventure, an exhilarating sensation, and a ticket to liberation. Whether it’s race-specific cycling events like The Tour de Fat, riding for charity rides like the Five Boro Bike Tour, or just simply getting around town on two wheels, maintaining good working order is essential to enjoy it fully and show respect for our beloved wheels! Bike Month in NYC brings plenty of ways to honor our love for two wheels this May: Moonlit Roads at night at Central Park during The Tour de Fat or Five Boro Bike Tour: all events offer immersive sights of city sights from a handlebar-level perspective!
On Saturday morning at 112th Street and Amsterdam Avenue at the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine is an annual Blessing of Bicycles service open to all riders – commuters, messengers, recreational riders, messengers, or just those who enjoy getting around on two wheels.
Blessing is a traditional Catholic ceremony that prays for God to protect both bicycles and riders, invoking his divine protection on both. Father James Smith from St Michael’s Abbey roamed among over 2,000 attendees, sprinkling holy water on bikes while offering personal blessings when requested.
The popularity of Blessing ceremonies has inspired other communities across the United States and Australia to hold similar ceremonies, from Burlington, Massachusetts, Los Angeles, and Melbourne annually holding blessing ceremonies with differing levels of emphasis on faith, environmentalism, fitness, and cycling rights.
Greenpoint, Brooklyn — On a steamy summer afternoon in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, a group of people were hard at work in the backyard of a church, stripping old bicycles down to their frames and painting them white, creating ghost bikes as a memorial to honor and remember those killed on city streets; these ghost bikes serve both to honor those lost as well as serve as reminders about just how hazardous riding on public roads can be.
The New York City chapter of the Street Memorial Project has installed 45 ghost bikes throughout New York to raise awareness of cycling dangers to the general public and pressure local governments to improve road safety for both cyclists and pedestrians.
Ghost bike creation is easy and costs little money; ghost builders typically get their bikes for free from local bike shops or friends’ basements and spend up to $50 on paint, lock, and chain. In order to simplify painting them more quickly and lessen theft risks, they also removed non-essential parts, such as cables and brakes, to make the project simpler and reduce theft risks.
Family of deceased cyclists will often discover ghost bikes at crime scenes and thank them for turning them into memorials – this serves as a potent reminder that their deaths were not for nothing.
However, some critics of ghost bikes as a memorial to victims are dissatisfied with this tactic, believing it gives the wrong impression that cycling is hazardous and fails to recognize vulnerable cyclists, such as those who are poor or over-policing.
Street Memorial Project continues to use ghost bikes as its primary tool for raising awareness of pedestrian and cyclist issues on city streets. They hope that by introducing these concerns, they’ll prompt cities to implement improvements in engineering, public education, and enforcement while pressuring authorities into conducting complete investigations of all bicycle crashes that involve cyclists.
Blessing of the Bicycles Day
The bicycle is an efficient mode of transportation that serves many different functions while simultaneously being a symbol of freedom and liberation. Therefore, its popularity among various psychedelic communities is unsurprising. Some of the most innovative bike discoveries have come about thanks to people taking LSD; these breakthroughs have produced bikes that are more efficient and faster than ever before.
Once upon a time, many people used walking or bicycling as their mode of transport for everyday commuting and long trips. With the rise of automobiles, however, these modes have become less popular; now, most commuters use bikes daily as part of their daily commute routine and as an enjoyable form of exercise and fresh air intake.
On Blessing of the Bicycles Day, cyclists gather to have their bicycles blessed. This non-denominational ceremony recognizes all forms of cycling and serves to give cyclists a blessing for the coming cycling season. Services typically include prayer and sprinkling holy water from their bikes – making Blessing of the Bicycles Day an excellent opportunity to both recognize our passion for cycling and honor all those who use their bicycles to assist others.
A mass Blessing of Bicycles event was held at Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine in Morningside Heights one day prior to BIKE NEW YORK: Five Borough Bicycle Tour and was open and accessible for the public to participate in.
The Blessing of Bicycles has long been an important tradition among cyclists, reminding them to keep their faith while riding on public roadways and encouraging safe riding practices that respect fellow road users. St Paul’s Cathedral has hosted this event for more than 25 years – making it a beloved annual tradition among locals.
At this event, clergy members will bless all bikes, scooters, skateboards, and unicycles that come through the service area and pray for the safety of cyclists and their families. Additionally, there will be an act of rememberance for cyclists killed on roads.
Blessing of the Bicycles at the Cathedral
Bike riding can be more than just transportation; it’s an adventure and sense of freedom all in one! That’s why riders across the world celebrate their love of biking with an annual ceremony known as Blessing of the Bicycles, an event designed to show appreciation for cycling as well as pray for safety on the roads. Blessing also serves as an opportunity to honor those who have died on two wheels as well as give thanks for life that cycling offers us all.
Beginning with cyclists bringing their bicycles up to the altar and being blessed by Reverend Patrick Malloy – Dean of the Cathedral – they were then sprinkled with holy water and given good wishes before embarking on their ride, including participating in Five Boro Bike Tour the following day. It was an enjoyable and colorful event, which provided an excellent start to spring.
At this service, pedalers from all walks of life gathered, including Wall Street financiers and blue-collar workers alike. Many were dressed in their bike gear, while others donned suits or ties for formality. Following the service, there was plenty of time for socializing among riders eager to celebrate their passion for cycling.
“Blessing of the Bicycles” events may seem odd at first glance, but they’ve become an essential tradition across America. With more and more people opting to bike commute or enjoy cycling as part of their lifestyles, these ceremonies combine religion, environmentalism, fitness, and cycling advocacy into one colorful celebration that’s tailored specifically for each locality.