Our Lady Pilgrimage to Lourdes, Medjugorje, Rome, Assisi and more

Led by Fr Keith Gordon-Davis •  20 May to 4 June 2020

Join this special pilgrimage to Lourdes, Medjugorje, Rome, Assisi and other places. Dedicated to Our Lady, it is presented by the parish of the Resurrection in Bryanston, Johannesburg. Going to France, Italy, Croatia and Bosnia.

Wednesday, May 20
We depart from OR Tambo International in Johannesburg to catch our flight and begin our pilgrimage to Lourdes, Rome, Assisi, Loreto, Split and Medjugorje.

Thursday, May 21
On arrival in Toulouse we transfer by bus to Lourdes. On arrival in Lourdes we check into our hotel, which is near the sanctuary, and then have Mass. We have time at leisure to explore the town of Lourdes. After dinner in our hotel, we have an opportunity take part in the nightly torchlight procession through the sanctuary. Overnight: Lourdes

The basilicas of the Immaculate Conception and the Rosary in Lourdes

Friday, May 22
After breakfast we have Mass and then enjoy a guided tour of the sites connected to St Bernadette, such as Boly Mill (where she was born), the Cachot (the converted jail where her family lived) and so on. We then have time at leisure to go to the famous Baths (mind the opening times), venerate at the Massabielle Grotto of the apparition, explore the tiered Basilicas of Our Lady of The Immaculate Conception and the Rosary,
see the underground Basilica of St Pius X , meditate at the Gave de Pau river, visit the nearby Church of St Bernadette, which is on the spot where St Bernadette stood during the final apparition. and so on. Overnight: Lourdes

Saturday, May 23
One of these two days we dedicate to following the Stations of the Cross. We have plenty of time to see the sites mentioned above to make the most of our time in Lourdes. Overnight: Lourdes

Sunday, May 24
After breakfast at the hotel we transfer to Toulouse airport to catch your flight to Rome. In Rome we are met by our tour director who will accompany us throughout our time in Italy. We check into our hotel and have the rest of the day at leisure. Overnight: Rome

St Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican

Monday, May 25
Today we see St John Lateran Basilica, which is the official cathedral of Rome and of the pope. We visit the Holy Stairs, which are said to be the steps on which Jesus walked to his trial before Pontius Pilate in Jerusalem. At St Mary Major Basilica Pope Francis has a special devotion to the statue of Mary Salus Populi Romani in the basilica which he visits before every foreign trip. We then explore the Rome of the Renaissance, including the Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, Navona Square as well as the Pantheon. We also have opportunity to see the Colosseum and the Roman Forum. Overnight: Rome

Tuesday, May 26
After breakfast, we go to the Vatican where we enjoy an expertly-guided tour of St Peter’s Basilica. After some time at leisure, we follow the Appian Way to visit one of the Catacombs there. We then visit the Basilica of St Paul Outside the Walls with the authenticated tomb of St Paul the Apostle, and the images of every pope in history, from St Peter to Pope Francis, represented in medallion mosaics. Overnight: Rome

Wednesday, May 27
Today we see the pope at the general audience in St Peter’s Square. It is an unforgettable experience to see Pope Francis close-up (subject to the pope being in Rome at the time). After lunch we depart for Assisi. Overnight: Assisi

St Francis Basilica in Assisi

Thursday, May 28
Today we explore Assisi, the town of St Francis and his companion St Clare, on a guided tour. The 13th-century Basilica of St Francis contains the sacred tomb of Francis and Giotto’s beautiful frescoes of his life. St Clare Basilica, also from the 13th century, houses the relics of St Clare, original robes that belonged to her, as well as the miraculous crucifix that spoke to Francis. In the afternoon, we visit the Eremo delle Carceri, in the caves on the slope of Mount Subasio just outside the walls of Assisi, St Francis and his followers established their first home at the Carceri Hermitage. He often returned here during his life to pray. At San Damiano Convent St Francis first received his miraculous calling in 1205 and St Clare died there in 1253, it is an important stop on the pilgrimage to the Franciscan holy city. We visit the Basilica di Santa Maria degli Angeli (St Mary of the Angels), just outside Assisi. This is the place where St Francis’ great mission really began and where he died. Inside the grand Baroque basilica is the Porziuncola, the tiny church in the meadows which St Francis was called to renovate. Overnight: Assisi

Friday, May 29
After breakfast, we leave Assisi and drive across Italy to the town of Loreto where we see the Holy House of Nazareth and the beautiful Madonna of Loreto which more than 50 popes have visited. According to legend, angels miraculously carried Our Lady’s house from the Holy Land to Loreto. Historians have a simpler view: a family named d’Angelis transported Mary’s house from Nazareth to Europe after the Crusader kingdom in the Holy Land fell to the Saracens. We are blessed to visit Loreto during the Jubilee Year for Air Travellers and for all Pilgrims to the Shrine of the Holy House from every part of the world, declared by Pope Francis. We then proceed to Ancona where we take the overnight ferry across the Adriatic to Split, Croatia. Overnight: Cabin on the ferry

Split in Croatia. (Photo: Katarzyna Tyl)

Saturday, May 30
We arrive in Split where we enjoy a guided tour of this historic and picturesque coastal city in Croatia region of Dalmatia. We see sights such as Diocletian’s Palace, built in AD 305. The ancient St Duje Cathedral is the mausoleum of Diocletian, the persecutor of Christians, turned into a church. Peristil Square is an original Roman court.

Our bus then takes us to Medjugorje in Bosnia-Herzegovina. In the evening we participate in the Joyful and Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary, Holy Mass, Blessings of Objects, Prayer for health of soul and body, and the Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary. Overnight: Medjugorje

Sunday, May 31 & Monday, June 1
Sunday and Monday are devoted entirely to Our Lady and her Son, Jesus. We have a guided tour of Medjugorje and there will be opportunity for encounters with visionaries of Medjugorje. Three of the visionaries still see the Blessed Virgin every evening during the recitation of the Rosary at 18:40. There will be time for prayer, silent adoration and, if requested, confession. We climb the Hill of the Apparitions where bronze plaques depicting the Mysteries of the Rosary help us meditate on the life of Our Lord. On top is the site of the first apparitions of the Virgin, a place of contemplation. We also follow the Way of the Cross on Mount Krisevac. The massive cross on the peak was erected long before the apparitions, in 1934 to mark the 1,900th anniversary of the Death and Resurrection of Jesus. Overnight: Medjugorje

Tuesday, June 2
Today we continue our time of prayer and reflection in Medjugorje, and join in the celebration of the shrine’s feast. Overnight: Medjugorje

Wednesday, June 3
Today we leave Medjugorje and return to Dubrovnik in Croatia to take our flight home, departing at 21:05. Depending on our arrival there, we may have some hours at leisure in this beautiful city, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site with its medieval fortresses.

Thursday, June 4
We arrive in Johannesburg in the morning, physically tired but spiritually raised by our holy journey which brought us in contact with Our Lord, Our Lady and many great saints.

 

MASS WILL BE CELEBRATED EVERY DAY.
INCLUDES DAILY LUNCH ON 8 DAYS OF OUR JOURNEY

Est. Price: R44,980 (sharing, ex-Jhb; subject to currency, airport tax fluctuations, calculated on 35 passengers; R16,28 to the Euro)

Includes: All flights ex-Johannesburg (incl. airport taxes), accommodation in 3 and 4-star hotels (sharing) with breakfast and dinner, lunch (on eight days), ferry from Bari to Dubrovnik (accommodation in cabin, with dinner and breakfast), travel insurance (up to age 75), transfers, travelling on air-conditioned luxury buses, English-speaking guides and tour escort, entrance fees as per itinerary.

Excludes: Visas (Schengen only), tips & hotel taxes (mandatory, estimated at €10 p/d), personal expenses, travel to and from O.R. Tambo Airport/Jhb.

A deposit of R4,800 secures your place on this unique pilgrimage. Booking form and details in the illustrated itinerary.

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