As Pilgrim Relationship Coordinator, I have the privilege of interacting with hundreds of pilgrims each year, both before and after their transformational pilgrimage experiences. Through these encounters – on the phone or via e-mail – I know it is not an exaggeration to say a pilgrimage is a life-changing event in the faith life of … Read More
So, you’ve decided to make a pilgrimage. You’ve registered, purchased insurance, and obtained the right travel documents … but there’s so much more to a pilgrimage than the practicalities of travel! You’re not just going on a vacation. You’re putting yourself in God’s hands in a very special way, asking Him to show you what … Read More
The Man A distant cousin of Jesus, John makes his first appearance in the Gospels when the angel Gabriel first announces his conception to Elizabeth and Zechariah, an aging couple who had previously been unable to bear children. Overcome with disbelief at the angel’s message, Zechariah voiced his skepticism and was instantly stricken with muteness, … Read More
1981: Apparitions of Medjugorje begin 1984: Local bishop, diocese of Mostar forms a commission to investigate the events in Medjugorje. 1986: Bishop submits a negative decision about Medjugorje to the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith (CDF), which at the time was led by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (later, Pope Benedict). 1986: CDF, under Cardinal Ratzinger … Read More
Pilgrimage changes people. It enriches their lives, brings them closer to each other, and – most importantly – closer to God. When they return home, it’s with a renewed sense of self, a renewed purpose, and a strong desire to grow Christ’s kingdom in their own communities. Having experienced God in such a profound and … Read More
“We think of Lent as a time of stripping away. This year, my Lent was incredibly challenging in multiple ways,” Thirty-two-year-old Maria of Indianapolis, Indiana shares. “I was going through a period of desolation. I just kept thinking, hold on to Easter, hold on to Easter, things will get better.” Easter Sunday came and, despite … Read More
This church, while nearly one thousand years old, has many features to admire, but perhaps the most interesting is found on the inside, and only makes appearances on special occasions. This spectacle is called the Botafumiero, and it is one of the largest thuribles in the world.
Last week we began a two-part series with Fr. Leon Pereira, Chaplain to English-Speaking Pilgrims in Medjugorje. We looked at the Church’s current ruling on the Medjugorje apparitions, and Fr. commented on a quote from Archbishop Henrik Hoser – “The light far outweighs the shadows.” This week, we’ll turn our attention to the question, “Do … Read More
Recently, Fr. Leon Pereira, Chaplain to English Speaking Pilgrims in Medjugorje, spoke with Medjugorje pilgrimage leader Ann Vucic about the status of the Holy See’s approval of the Medjugorje apparitions, and whether the faithful are allowed to come to Medjugorje. Fr. Leon’s words offered substantial food for thought regarding pilgrimage to Medjugorje. Over the next … Read More
What does “incorrupt” mean?The word “incorrupt” means “not having undergone decomposition, especially of a human body.” When a body is exhumed for examination and judged incorruptible, they are generally seen as a saint, although the state of incorruptibility no longer is counted as a miracle towards an individual’s cause for sainthood, as it was in … Read More
Recent events have lead many to speculate that the Vatican may be paving the way toward approval of Medjugorje as a site of Marian apparitions. On Thursday, May 31, 2018, the Feast of the Visitation of the Virgin Mary, the Vatican announced that it was appointing recently-retired Archbishop Henryk Hoser as Special Apostolic Visitor to … Read More
With any pilgrimage that you may embark on, there are plenty of ways to be immersed into a spiritual experience. You may be able to touch a relic, visit a place where Jesus may have walked, or come within feet of the Holy Father during a Wednesday Audience. But at Lourdes, the everyday pilgrim not only has the option to be immersed spiritually, but also physically, when they partake in the ritual of bathing at St. Bernadette’s Grotto.
Found in Tabgha along the shoreline of the Sea of Galilee, not far from where the multiplication of the loaves and fishes took place, is a quaint Roman Catholic Church made of gray stone. It’s quite simple, with a single column that is topped off by a bell and crucifix, and a few windows peppering the outside walls. Its red roof stands out amongst the greenery that surrounds it. This is the Church of the Primacy of St. Peter, a site that commemorates the event that started a papal lineage that spans 265 successors.
Opened in the 13th century, the Wieliczka Salt Mine was Poland’s oldest business venture until it was forced to close in 2007 due to declining salt prices and flooding in the mine. What was left behind wasn’t just a 1,072-foot-deep hole in the ground, but an astounding architectural marvel that amazes close to 1.2 million people annually.
When I first stepped foot inside the Sagrada Familia almost four years ago I was more than a little offended when a fellow art student commented that this iconic structure was “ugly.” In last week’s article, I explored the two completed facades and how they encapsulate the fullness and depth of the Catholic faith. Read More…