An 11-Day Pilgrimage to France & Italy
France & Italy Pilgrimage Sites, Including:
Lourdes, Paris, Chartres, Lisieux, Nevers, Paray le Monial, Ars, Assisi, Rome & The Vatican.
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Day 1 Monday
USA / PARIS
This morning we gather for our departing flight for France. Meals are served on board our overnight flight.
Day 2- Tuesday
PARIS / LOURDES
Upon our arrival in Paris we depart for our short flight to Lourdes. Upon our arrival at the airport just outside of Lourdes, we meet our Pilgrimage Tours tour director who will remain with us until the end of our tour. Upon our arrival in Lourdes, we celebrate Mass at the Rosary Basilica before arriving at our hotel. Dinner is followed by the Candlelight Procession. Overnight in Lourdes.
Day 3 Wednesday
This morning after Mass we take a walking tour to see the sites of Lourdes where, in 1858, Mary appeared to young Bernadette Soubirous. We visit the Grotto, the Spring and the healing Baths, as well as the Basilica of St. Pius X, the Rosary Basilica and Bernadette’s home. In the afternoon, we visit the local Ukrainian Catholic Church in Lourdes. The remainder of our day is free for Adoration, Confessions, a time of private devotion, reciting the Rosary, and relaxation before dinner. Dinner and overnight in Lourdes.
Day 4 Thursday
LOURDES / ST. SAVIN
This morning we will explore the countryside known by St. Bernadette with a trip into the snowcapped Pyrenees Mountains. We will make a stop to visit the old Benedictine Abbey in the village of St. Savin. The remainder of the day is back in Lourdes where Mass will be celebrated in another of the Basilica chapels. Finally, we can participate in Lourdes’ Stations of the Cross, which is located outdoors amongst nature. Dinner and overnight in Lourdes.
Day 5 Friday
LOURDES / PARIS
This morning we take a short flight from Lourdes to Paris. Upon our arrival in Paris, we embark on a motor coach tour of Paris to see the Arc de Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower, the Champs-Elysees and more. Then we go to Rue de Bac where we will celebrate Mass at the Shrine of the Miraculous Medal, where St. Catherine Laboure received her apparitions of Mary. Finally, we will visit the Shrine of Vincent de Paul. Dinner and overnight in Paris.
Day 6- Saturday
This morning we will celebrate Mass at the cathedral of Notre-Dame, which stands on the banks of the Seine on the site of an early Christian basilica that had in turn been built on the site of a temple from the Roman era. Here we will see the Gallery of the Kings, its Rose Window and its many chapels. When then head to the Montmartre District, the “Artists Quarter” of Paris and visit the Romanesque and Byzantine Sacre Coeur Basilica on top of Montmartre Hill. The basilica with its many domes and arches contain wonderful sculptures, paintings and mosaics. In the rear of the basilica you will see a bell tower that houses the “ Savoyarde”, a bell weighing nearly 19 tons and one of the largest in the world. The remainder of our day is free for reflection and prayer. Dinner and overnight in Paris.
Day 7 Sunday
PARIS / ROME
This morning we have our flight from Paris to Rome. We arrive in Rome and enter the Eternal City via the ancient Appian Way, the traditional pilgrims’ route followed by Peter and Paul. Next we will visit the first of the four major basilicas of Rome, St. Paul’s Outside the Walls where the Apostle is buried. While visiting the grounds, we pause for our own celebration of Mass at this wonderful basilica. Next we go to our hotel for check-in. A panoramic sightseeing tour of “illuminated Rome by night” follows dinner. Overnight in Rome.
Day 8 Monday
After breakfast our day begins with our own celebration of Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica. While at the Basilica we see a young Michelangelo’s masterpiece, the deeply moving, magnificent Pieta. Then we visit one of the great art collections in the world, the Vatican Museums. We see the Tapestries Gallery, the Belvedere with its marvelous statues. We also visit Raphaels Rooms, the Pincio Garden and Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel that has been restored to its original beauty. Dinner and overnight in Rome.
Day 9 Tuesday
Following breakfast we embark on a day’s worth of sightseeing beginning with the Mamertine Prison where Peter and Paul were held and many Christian martyrs died. We will then visit St. Peter in Chains. We will also see the Colosseum, Palatine and Capitoline Hills, the Imperial and Roman Forums and Constantine’s Arch. Next we visit another of Rome’s major basilicas, St. Mary Major, the most important church in the world devoted to Our Lady. We celebrate Mass here where Mass has been celebrated every day since the 5th century. We then depart for a visit to St. John Lateran, the Pope’s cathedral church where relics of both Peter and Paul remain under the main altar. Dinner and overnight in Rome.
Day 10 Wednesday
ROME Papal Audience
Following Mass this morning, we will go to the Vatican for an Audience with the Holy Father. The remainder of our day is free for prayer, reflection, relaxation or shopping the streets of Rome. Dinner and overnight in Rome.
Day 11 Thursday
ROME / USA
We rise for breakfast and depart for the airport for our flight home. Though our pilgrimage draws to a close, its blessings will last a lifetime and its graces are certain to draw us closer to the Lord.