This Is Why So Many Airports Have Chapels

©Wikimedia Commons

Visualize this scene because I’m sure you’ve been there many times before. You’re rushing through a busy airport trying to make your connection. You pass by Starbucks, Cinnabon, Bad Daddy’s Brewpub, the foot massage place and…a chapel?

Have you ever stopped to think why there are chapels in airports? There’s actually quite an interesting history behind it. The first airport chapel was built at Boston’s Logan Airport in 1951 – not for passengers, but for the Catholic employees at the airport.

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

The chapel in Boston was called “Our Lady of the Airways” and staff at other airports took notice. The next chapel was built in 1955 at what is now New York’s JFK Airport. JFK even added a Jewish synagogue and a Protestant chapel in the 1960s.

However, during the 1990s and into the new millennium, airport chapels shifted away from single-faith and trended toward interfaith, welcoming staff as well as travelers passing through.

Photo Credit: pxhere

Today, more than half of the busiest airports in the U.S. have chapels, most of which are interfaith and offer services for different religions at different times. And though you may wonder if people really use them, let us assure you: they do! The chapels offer a welcome respite from the hassles and headaches that can come with airline travel, which – I’m sure we can all agree – is so needed.