A photograph of members of the WA Portuguese Community congregated outside St Patrick's Basilica in Fremantle during the 'Blessing of the Fleet' celebrations in 1979. The Blessing of the Fleet takes place in Fremantle, Western Australia, on the second last Sunday in October. It was first held in 1948 and incorporates a procession in which two Madonna statues are carried from the Basilica to Fishing Boat Harbour. The event relates to one held in the port of Molfetta in Italy, which traditionally dates back to the twelfth century when crusaders returning from Palestine brought paintings of the Madonna to the port. Immigrant fishermen from Molfetta brought the tradition to Fremantle and in 1954 a second Madonna statue was added to the procession by immigrants from the Sicilian port of Capo d'Orlando.