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Motorcycle Mass and Blessing of the Bikes Day – May 7, 2023

Motorcycle Mass and Blessing of the Bikes Day is celebrated on the first Sunday in May. This year, it takes place on May 7. Taking your bike to the open road may be a spiritual experience for some, and this bond is never stronger than on Motorcycle Mass & Blessing of the Bikes Day, when motorcyclists assemble for a special mass to have their bikes blessed. The Blessing of the Bikes (also known as The Blessing of the Bicycles) is an annual ceremony in which riders of motorbikes or bicycles are blessed by a priest in the hopes of bringing them safety for the next season. At the start of the summer, many municipalities perform yearly rituals to bless motorbikes. Bikers from all walks of life attend the event, from Wall Street financiers and blue-collar employees to off-duty cops.

History of Motorcycle Mass and Blessing of the Bikes Day

For many people, riding a motorbike is more than just a mode of transportation; it’s an adventure, a sensation, and an experience unlike any other. It’s frequently linked to liberation and the desire to be free of all shackles. It’s no wonder that the motorbike has found its way into everyone’s hearts. It’s one adrenaline-pumping ticket to your liberation.

On some downtown streets, some 100 motorcycles from all across New York City roared their engines. They were on their way to a Catholic Mass unlike any other they’d ever attended.

Formal blazers and ties were replaced with leather jackets and bandanas, and you were more likely to see someone there with a demon tattoo on their arm than someone holding a Bible. Even the in-charge monsignor began the outdoor service by riding his Harley Davidson to the pulpit’s foot. Each motorbike received a blessing, which many of the riders who attended assured helped them stay safe while out on the road.

The first such mass blessing took place in 1999 at New York City’s Cathedral of St. John the Divine. The event has been purportedly non-denominational from its inception, focused more on rider safety than religion. The ritual does, however, involve prayers and the reading of religious scriptures, as well as the sprinkling of holy water on bicycles. Riders who died the previous year are remembered with a brief memorial service.

The service’s popularity has prompted other communities to follow suit. From Burlington, Massachusetts; to Los Angeles; to Melbourne, Australia; annual blessings are performed with varying degrees of focus on faith, sustainability, fitness, cyclists’ rights, and safety.

Motorcycle Mass and Blessing of the Bikes Day timeline

1894
The First Use of the Term ‘Motorcycle’

Hildebrand & Wolfmüller, a German business, is the first to coin the term "motorcycle."

1903
Harley-Davidson

The Motor Company is founded by William Harley and his associates Arthur and Walter Davidson.

1999
First Blessing in New York City

The first mass blessing of bicycles takes place in New York City's Cathedral of St. John the Divine.

2013
10 Years of Blessings

In Los Angeles, the Good Samaritan Hospital holds its 10th Annual Blessing of the Bikes.

Motorcycle Mass and Blessing of the Bikes Day FAQs

Where are the Motorcycle Mass and Blessings of the Bikes?

This day is observed both internationally and domestically. This occasion is commemorated in countries like Australia and New Zealand, as well as in particular riding communities in the United States.

What is the Motorcycle Mass and Blessings of Bikes ceremony?

Riders march by the church during the ritual, as local clergy, priests, or holy persons pray for a safe and productive riding season.

What is the duration of the Blessing of the Bikes?

Musicians from each area rock the crowd for hours, performing a range of classics for an eager and appreciative audience as their vehicles are blessed.

Motorcycle Mass and Blessing of the Bikes Day Activities

  1. Promote a sense of community

    Check to see whether your local riders' communities maintain this custom. Attend these events if you have the opportunity.

  2. Get along with other riders

    When you have someone to share with, everything gets better. Make friends with other riders and organize activities with them. Make the party a year-round affair.

  3. Join a riding group

    To commemorate this day, form a group with other enthusiasts. Participate in riding events and open up a whole new world of adventure.

5 Interesting Facts About Motorcycles

  1. The first Harley Davidson

    It had a single-cylinder engine with a carburetor made from a tomato can.

  2. The most expensive motorcycles cost $360,000

    Titanium, carbon, and aircraft aluminum are some of the materials utilized to make it.

  3. Longest motorbike leap ever recorded

    Robbie Maddison of Melbourne, Australia, established the record for the longest motorbike leap, jumping 346 feet.

  4. The use of a helmet

    Following Colonel T.E. Lawrence's death, the wearing of a helmet became required in the U.K.

  5. Largest mileage traveled

    The largest mileage traveled on a motorbike in 24 hours was 3256.5 km, while riding in South Africa, Matthew McKelvey achieved a Guinness World Record.

Why We Love Motorcycle Mass and Blessing of the Bikes Day

  1. Motorcycles are good for the environment

    Motorcycles are thought to be one of the most ecologically friendly modes of transportation. They are environmentally friendly because of their low fuel usage and per-mile carbon emissions, providing you with the guilt-free adventure-packed journey you require.

  2. It’s a fantastic set of events

    Religion, tradition, and regional flavor come together to create vibrant celebrations shaped by the regional spirit of each event. Join in today!

  3. The celebrations are heartwarming

    It not only honors bikers all around the world but the beauty and sincerity of the underlying idea behind the day are simply inspiring. We love that about this day!

Motorcycle Mass and Blessing of the Bikes Day dates

YearDateDay
2022May 1Sunday
2023May 7Sunday
2024May 5Sunday
2025May 4Sunday
2026May 3Sunday

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