Pilgrimage to France and Spain

April 2017

Apr 29

April 27

April 27 ­This morning we travelled from Barcelona into the foothills of the Pyrenees to Manresa and Monserrat.  The traffic was terrible as the trip to Manresa took nearly three hours instead of one.  Our guide was once again surprised by our equanimity with traffic and delays.  Manresa is where St Ignatius of Loyola spent...
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Apr 26

April 25

Lourdes On Tuesday morning we had a walking tour of Lourdes, visiting Bernadette’s childhood home, her parish church, her room when she and her family were destitute and the visions began.  The afternoon was free so I wandered about the town and the large area devoted to the grotto and the millions of people who visit each...
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Apr 26

April 25

Lourdes On Tuesday morning we had a walking tour of Lourdes, visiting Bernadette’s childhood home, her parish church, her room when she and her family were destitute and the visions began.  The afternoon was free so I wandered about the town and the large area devoted to the grotto and the millions of people who visit each...
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Apr 25

April 25 - Lourdes

Day 7 - Lourdes O my God, what was that?  We arrived in Lourdes late yesterday afternoon.  We checked into the hotel and then progressed to a chapel off the upper church at Lourdes.  It was my rotation for assisting Father and everything went as usual.  We came back for dinner and afterwards I went upstairs to blog while...
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Apr 24

April 23 - Avignon

Sunday April 23, 2017 Sunday began with Mass at the Basilica of Notre Dame in Lyons.  A building the locals call the upside down elephant.  It seems to me that I have been way too serious this trip, so for a break for all of us I will feature some of the humorous side of the trip. Maybe I will apply for an internship at the Institute...
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Apr 23

April 22 - Ars

April 22 - Ars At dinner tonight we were discussing the highpoints of the day when someone mentioned that each of the three saints we had seen honored since Paris were young, not very educated, and yet were called and chosen to reveal God’s mercy to those around them.  Once again God chose not the wise but the simple to bring the...
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Apr 22

April 21 - Chartres

Chartres Escaping Parisian traffic we headed for Chartres Cathedral which is most famous for its stained glass windows. Joan and I didn’t know about the windows but we knew about the labyrinth.  We were lucky in that on Fridays the labyrinth is uncovered.  Most of the week, the area is covered in chairs for Mass. The...
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Apr 21

April 20 - Paris

Day 3 – Paris There is an aspect of a life of faith best described as serendipity.  The formal definition of serendipity is the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way.  The spiritual aspect would say not by chance but by the hand of God.  We were walking from the church of the Miraculous...
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Apr 20

April 19 - Paris

We had an early start from Lisieux this morning riding through the mists and sun of a marine climate to Paris.  After we arrived in Parish Fr Maurice presided at Mass in a Chapel at Our Lady of Victories Church where St. Louis Martin had prayed while in Paris and his daughter, St Therese of Lisieux, had visited on her way to Rome...
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Apr 19

April 18 - Lisieux

Day 1: Lisieux This first day persistently reminded me to slow down.  After landing at the Paris airport we spent about an hour and a half in line waiting to have our passports stamped: a twenty second process.  Actually, I spent the whole day decompressing.  From the late morning stop and go Paris perimeter freeways to the walks...
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Apr 19

April 17 - Beginnings

Pilgrimage Day 1. We are on the flight from Seattle to Paris as I write.  I have been thinking a lot about pilgrimages and how they are different from vacations or tours.   A pilgrimage is a spiritual journey.  A pilgrim is looking for something.  It could be as simple as a renewed relationship with God.  It could...
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Pilgrimage to France and Spain

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