I think you're on to something here. They probably couldn't give two shakes about nominations, or subsequent honors and recognitions ... Grammy, Hall of Fame, etc
As a fan, it would mean a collective recognition of their timelessness, musicianship. A way to hail them in the esteem we see them and cannot bestow ourselves other than through record, merchandise sales.
In my mind, these honors are a fantastic way to say "way to go guys!" And I think, with that knowledge, they might be humbled.
I'm of the opinion that we as fans are probably happier for Priest than they are about the nominations.
As a fan I am happy that their effort on Nosatrdamus was at least recognized. As a 30+ year fan of the band, I believe that they have been over looked by the various media and all that goes with it since their conception. I know that they never cared about such things, and in the grand scheme of things none of it really does matter.
I guess like any good parent, when you see that someone (something) you love makes an impression on others, I tend to smile a little and think, 'way to go guys!!'