Annual Lourdes Pilgrimage leaves this week

Eighty-third annual Liverpool Archdiocesan Pilgrimage

As the Liverpool Archdiocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes celebrates its ninetieth year the eighty-third annual pilgrimage begins on Friday 26 July 2013 (pilgrimages did not take place for a number of years due to the Second World War). The Right Reverend Thomas Williams, Apostolic Administrator of the Archdiocese of Liverpool, will be leading the pilgrimage travelling with over 1,300 pilgrims.

Archbishop Emeritus Patrick Kelly will also be joining the pilgrims in Lourdes.  400 of the pilgrims will travel by air on three special flights from Liverpool John Lennon Airport while a further 400 pilgrims have other flights or overland coaches, 120 will travel as sick pilgrims of which 80 will be in the special accommodation of the Accueil St Frai.  This year for those who are unable to fly a Jumbulance will leave Burtonwood on Thursday 25 July carrying 24 sick pilgrims and helpers overland to the French Shrine.
 
450 young people will be taking part in the Liverpool Youth Pilgrimage travelling by coach from Chorley, Knowsley, the Isle of Man, Leyland, Liverpool, St Helens, Sefton, Warrington, Widnes and Wigan to join them.  Ten coaches will be leaving from points across the Archdiocese at 7.30 am on Thursday morning, 25 July, to begin the twenty-six hour journey.  Whilst in Lourdes and immediately following this arduous journey, the young pilgrims have to get up as early as 4:30 am to work in the hospital, while others follow them down in order to push the pilgrims in wheelchairs to the different places of devotion and to Mass.
 
After travelling from Liverpool the pilgrimage will begin with Mass on Friday evening, which will be celebrated in the Chapel Sacre Coeur.  As the Catholic Church celebrates a Year of Faith the theme of this year’s pilgrimage is ‘Lourdes, a Door of Faith 1923-2013’.  On the morning of Saturday 27 July there will be a Mass of Welcome attended by all the sick and helpers.  On Sunday morning, 28 July, Mass will be celebrated in the Grotto, the holiest place in Lourdes, where it is believed that the Virgin Mary appeared to St Bernadette on eighteen occasions 155 years ago in 1858.  Sunday afternoon and evening will see a Eucharistic procession and a Service of Reconciliation.
 
On Monday 29 July Mass will be celebrated in the Rosary Basilica and pilgrims will join in the traditional Marian Torchlight Procession at 9.00 pm.  On Tuesday 30 July pilgrims will take part in the Stations of the Cross during the morning before Mass in St Bernadette’s church in the afternoon.  On Wednesday 31 July the pilgrims will join the International Celebration of Mass with others from throughout the world taking part.  In the afternoon Mass will be celebrated at Bartres and in the evening there will be a Holy Hour in St Bernadette’s church.  On Thursday 1 August there is Mass of Anointing of the Sick and on Thursday afternoon the Esplandade Altar will be the setting for a Farewell Service.
 
The pilgrims return to Liverpool on Friday 2 August.
 
A copy of the full timetable is given below.
 
ARCHDIOCESE OF LIVERPOOL LOURDES PILGRIMAGE 2013
 
(Times given are Central European Summer Time: CEST)
 
FRIDAY 26 JULY
 
                        Pilgrims depart from Liverpool John Lennon Airport
  8.00 pm       MASS will be celebrated in the Chapel Sacre Coeur
 
SATURDAY 27 JULY
 
  2.30 pm       MASS OF WELCOME
 
SUNDAY 28 JULY
 
  8.30 am       MASS will be celebrated in the Grotto
  5.00 pm       EUCHARISTIC PROCESSION and ADORATION for Liverpool pilgrims.
  9.00 pm       A SERVICE OF RECONCILIATION will be celebrated in St Bernadette’s church
 
MONDAY 29 JULY
 
  2.00 pm       MASS will be celebrated in the Rosary Basilica
  5.00 pm       EUCHARISTIC PROCESSION and ADORATION for Liverpool pilgrims.
  9.00 pm       TORCHLIGHT MARIAN PROCESSION for Liverpool pilgrims
 
TUESDAY 30 JULY
 
10.15 am      STATIONS OF THE CROSS
  2.30 pm       MASS will be celebrated in St Bernadette’s church
 
WEDNESDAY 31 JULY
 
  9.30 am       INTERNATIONAL MASS
  3.00 pm       MASS will be celebrated at Bartres for Liverpool pilgrims
  9.00 pm       HOLY HOUR in St Bernadette’s church
 
THURSDAY 1 AUGUST
 
10.00 am       MASS OF ANOINTING OF THE SICK
  2.45 pm       A FAREWELL SERVICE will be celebrated at the Esplandade Altar
 
FRIDAY 2 AUGUST
 
  9.30 am        MASS will be celebrated in St Joseph’s Chapel
Pilgrims return to Liverpool