President’s Letter | April 2020

Dear Colleagues and Friends of the IACAC,

The entire planet is going through a very strange and painful time. The COVID-19 pandemic has enforced half of the world population into some sort of isolation although it seems that we haven’t reach the peak of the pandemic yet. Each of us has now seen the dramatic impact of lockdowns around the world on air traffic and on the global aviation industry. Our airports are empty. It will take months and years for airlines and airports to recover from this tragedy and if many of us are unable to visit the airport in which we serve for now, the presence and ministry of airport chaplains will be more than ever essential in airports around the world.

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IACAC 2020 Annual Conference in Nairobi Cancelled

For the second time in its 53 years of existence the IACAC has to cancel its Annual Conference. The COVID-19 pandemic, the uncertainties of how it will evolve, its dramatic effects on the global economy, and, more specifically, on the aviation industry as well as religious organisations that support our members and chaplaincies around the world, has forced this decision.

After a few weeks of thought and much prayer, the IACAC Board met online on 20 April and made the decision to cancel the 2020 IACAC Conference which was to be held in Nairobi, Kenya in October. The decision was made in coordination with our host chaplain, the Rev. Edward Nambute who has agreed to postpone the hosting of the conference to 2021.

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Rev Michael Banfield

Rev Michael Banfield

In the early hours of the 24th March our friend, and former Vice President and former Senior Chaplain at London Luton, the Rev Michael Banfield, passed away. Throughout his life Michael was a faithful servant of God and has now been called to Glory.

Michael was a member of the IACAC Board and Vice President from 2008 until 2013. He contributed much to the life of the Association and was instrumental in writing and setting up access to airport chaplaincy training and development materials online. He was passionate about airport chaplaincy and worked tirelessly to promote and encourage new chaplaincies. Wherever he went in the world he visited the airport either in support of the chaplain or to learn more about it as a prospective site for a new chaplaincy.

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Fr. Silvano Sirtoli

In the night of the 16th of March Fr. Silvano Sirtoli, former Chaplain (2007-2018) of Bergamo Int. Airport (Italy) passed away at the age of 59 frormCovid-19. We entrust him to the Lord asking him to intercede for each of us and for our communities.