Dublin’s Black Santa makes unseasonable appearance for Ukraine appeal
From today (Tuesday April 26) until Saturday April 30, Black Santa will make an unseasonable appearance outside St Ann’s Church, Dawson Street. The annual Black Santa Sit Out at the church has become a Christmas tradition in Dublin’s city centre. But this week, as people continue to flee the war in Ukraine, Black Santa will be back out on the street again to raise funds to support refugees who are arriving here.
The sit out will be officially opened by Archbishop Michael Jackson, tomorrow, Wednesday April 27, at 1pm. Volunteers will be outside the church collecting for the appeal from 10am to 5pm each day until Saturday.
The sit out will raise funds for the United Dioceses of Dublin and Glendalough’s U&Ukraine appeal. The dioceses have committed to responding practically to the crisis and the U&Ukraine initiative will help meet the needs of Ukrainian people arriving in Ireland. In consultation with community representatives and those working with refugees from Ukraine in the Dublin 1 area, the proposal is to utilise St George and St Thomas’s Church on Cathal Brugha Street as a centre to support those who have arrived here. It is also planned to facilitate worship in the Ukrainian Orthodox tradition to provide pastoral and liturgical ministry to Ukrainians who have been displaced.
The U&Ukraine appeal was launched during Holy Week with parishes throughout Dublin and Glendalough being called to action. St Ann’s has responded by mobilising their Black Santa Sit Out out of season.
For those who are unable to make it into the city centre to donate in person, a donation button will be available on the St Ann’s website https://stann.dublin.anglican.org/. As always, every cent donated to the Black Santa goes directly to charity with no deductions for administration.
Black Santa at St Ann’s in Dublin is modelled on a similar appeal, which has been run each Christmas by successive Deans of St Anne’s Cathedral in Belfast for many years. It became known as the Black Santa appeal because of the long heavy black cloaks worn by the clergy to keep out the winter cold. Over the 21 years that the appeal has been running in Dublin, St Ann’s has raised well over three quarters of a million euro for local charities, many of which support people who are homelessness or struggling financially.