Priests and officials at a well known Catholic church in Dublin have been left red faced after advertising a Memorial Mass for Osama bin Laden.

Parishioners in the north Dublin suburb of Howth reacted angrily when their parish bulletin announced a memorial service for the al-Qa’ida leader this Thursday.

The parish quickly withdrew the bulletin from its website and cancelled the service due to be dedicated to the assassinated terrorist who masterminded the 9/11 attacks on New York.

The newsletter caused consternation amongst parishioners and had stated that the Mass would be held at 10am this Thursday in the Church of the Assumption ‘in memory of Osama bin Laden (recently deceased)’.



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The Mass, believed to be the result of a  request by pranksters, will not go ahead according to the Catholic Church’s press office in Dublin.

A spokeswoman confirmed to the Irish Independent that there will not be a Mass in honour of the former al-Qa’ida leader.

She said: “It is not really clear what happened. The incident may have been the result of a mistake or a hoax or a prank.”

The practise of requesting memorial Masses for the deceased is a common one in every Church in Ireland and are usually made to parish offices.

“It is possible a prank request was made and was somehow included in the online parish newsletter,” added the spokeswoman.

The parish priest in Howth has confirmed to local media that the request was a ‘mistake’ and suggested that the person who had requested it was known to the Church.

He also said it was a ‘mistake’ that the notice had ended up in the parish newsletter.