Our Lady Queen of Peace
Shrines of France Pilgrimage
Spiritual Director: Fr. Matthew MacDonald
Group Leader: Penny Abbruzzese
May 31 - June 10, 2021
*Optional Post Tour to Medjugorje: - June 10 - 14, 2021
Your trip includes
- Round-trip airfare from New York, JFK
- Fuel Surcharges and Airport Taxes
- Centrally located first class hotels: (or similar)
- ~ 2 nights: June 01 – 03: Pullman Paris Bercy Center, Paris
- ~ 1 night: June 03 – 04: Grand Hôtel de l’Espérance, Lisieux
- ~ 1 nights: June 04 – 05: Mercure Mont Saint Michel, Mont Saint Michel
- ~ 1 night: June 05 – 06: Hotel Jehan de Beauce, Charters
- ~ 1 night: June 06 – 07: Hotel Troies Pigeons, Paray Le Monial
- ~ 3 nights: June 07 – 10: Hotel Novotel Lyon, Lyon
- Tour Escort throughout
- Breakfast and Dinner daily
- Wine with dinners
- Transfer by Private Motor Coach
- Sightseeing as per itinerary
- Entrance fees
- Mass daily & Spiritual activities
- Luggage handling (1 piece per person)
- Flight bag & portfolio of all travel documents
- Lunches, Beverages unless mentioned, Tips to your guide & driver.
Day 1, Mon, May 31: Depart for Paris
Make your way to your local airport, where you will board your overnight flight(s). Your meals will be served on board.
Day 2, Tue, June 1: Arrive Paris
Upon arriving at Paris airport, make your way to the baggage claim area and collect your luggage and then proceed to the arrival's hall, where you will be greeted by your driver, who will transfer you to your hotel. At your hotel, you will meet the Spiritual Director, Tour Escort and fellow pilgrims. Then, attend Mass at the magnificent, Sacre Coeur Basilica that stands atop Montmartre Hill. The Basilica, dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, was originally built in 1914, as an act of penance for the infidelity that France was experiencing during that time. While on your visit, in addition to the extraordinary artwork and architecture that forms the Basilica, you will see the beautiful mosaic of the Risen Christ, and the remarkable Grand Organ. Celebrate Mass at the Crypt that contains the Tombs of many notable Cardinals. Time permitting, you may have the opportunity during your free time to ascend a staircase to the Dome, where you will take in a breathtaking panoramic view of the city of Paris. Following this visit, we will continue to Paris for check in at your hotel, followed by some free time before a delicious dinner and an overnight.
Day 3, Wed, June 2: Paris
Today, you will enjoy a full sightseeing tour of Paris. After breakfast, you will visit and celebrate Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, where you will view the incorrupt body of St. Catherine Laboure. The Saint's guardian angel led her to the chapel, where the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to her. During apparitions, Our Lady repeatedly instructed the making and purpose of the Miraculous Medal, as well as the green scapular. According to the Blessed Virgin Mary, those who wear the Miraculous Medal and scapular will receive special protection and abundant graces. Following your prayerful and reflective experience at this elegant chapel, you will begin your sightseeing tour of Paris. After Mass, we will walk to Saint Vicent de Paul Church. Our panoramic sightseeing tour, via motor coach, for your to view the most recognizable symbol of the city of Paris, the Eiffel Tower. Historically, the Tower's original intent was to commemorate the centenary of the French Revolution, but, later assisted in advancements in meteorology, telegraphy during World War I, radio, and television. Pass by Invalides, the L'Arch de Triomphe, a monument that symbolizes gratitude for those who fought for France. This monument stands at the West end of the Champ-Elysees, one of the world's most famous boulevards and another one of our stops on the sightseeing tour. We will make a stop at La Madeleine, with the statue of Mary Magdalene carried to heaven by angels. Due to the tragic fire at Notre Dame Cathedral on April 15, 2019, Pilgrims will not be able to enter the Cathedral for the near future. Pilgrims will still have the opportunity to view the Cathedral from outside, and we expect the sacred relics to be on display in a nearby church or museum. Then continue and pass by the Opera and the ever famous, Louvre Museum.* This Museum is one of the finest in the world and contains a number of pieces that truly emanate not only French art, but also, European culture. Your fun-filled, busy day ends with a lovely meal and a very comfortable overnight.
Day 4, Thu, June 3: Paris – Lisieux
Following breakfast we will depart for Lisieux. According to Pope Pius X, St. Therese of Lisieux was the "greatest saint of modern times." Her extraordinary love for God and service to humanity will come alive, as you walk in the great Saint's footsteps. During your visit, you will see the beautiful Basilica of St. Therese, and the magnificent mosaics and stained glass that are contained within. You will pray and reflect upon the life of the beloved Saint. After visit to the Basilica, you will have the opportunity to view relics, clothing and personal objects of St. Therese when you visit her family home, Les Buissonets. Dinner and an overnight at your hotel in Lisieux.
Day 5, Fri, June 4: Lisieux – American Cementery – Mont Saint Michel
Upon waking up in Lisieux and enjoying breakfast, you will pray and reflect upon the life of the beloved Saint, as well as celebrate Mass. Additionally, you will tour the Carmelite Convent, where she entered in 1888, and is currently entombed in with her parents. Then transfer to Normandy Landing beaches. The Normandy landings were the landing operations on Tuesday, June 6, 1944 (termed D-Day) of the Allied invasion of Normandy during World War II. The largest seaborne invasion in history, the operation began the liberation of German-occupied Northwestern Europe from Nazi control, and contributed to the Allied victory on the Western Front. Continue on to visit the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial, a World War II memorial in Colleville-sur-Mer, Normandy, France, that honors American troops who died in Europe during World War II. Many of the brave American soldiers of World War II are buried here, and it is encouraged to say a prayer in thanksgiving for their courage. Continue to Mont Saint Michel, where the Monastery of Le Mont St. Michele is located, also known as, "The Wonder of the Western World". It is given this name because the Monastery is surrounded by a magnificent bay, which has one of the greatest tidal ranges in Europe, resulting in a breathtaking view. In 709, this Monastery was built and consecrated by Aubert, Bishop of Avranches at the request of Michael the Archangel. Since the ninth century, the Abbey has been home to a monastic community, in order to ensure the continuation of a spiritual presence. For centuries, it has been a pilgrimage site for those seeking Eternal Life with God. Dinner and overnight.
Day 6, Sat, June 5: Mont Saint Michael – Charters
This morning, following breakfast you will head towards Charters. Upon arrival, you will have free time for lunch in the quaint town, followed by a visit to the massive Cathedral Notre Dame, which is known worldwide for the incredible stained-glass windows, created in the twelfth and thirteenth century. A World Heritage site, by UNESCO, calls the Cathedral "the high point of French Gothic art" and a "masterpiece".
Day 7, Sun, June 6: Charters – Nevers – Paray Le Monial
After breakfast, we depart Charters for Nevers by way of the picturesque Loire Valley. Nevers is the site where St. Bernadette lived for twelve years, as a member of the Congregation of the Sisters of Nevers. The Saint suffered from a number of illnesses such as asthma, tuberculosis of the lungs, and a tubercular tumor in her right knee. For this reason, St. Bernadette received "The Last Sacraments" three times and eventually passed away in 1879, at the age of thirty-five. After some free time for lunch, we continue our travelling on to Paray le Monial, the place where St. Margaret Mary Alacoque experienced visions of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the 17th century. In revealing His Heart to her, Jesus said: "Behold the Heart which has so loved men that it has spared nothing but has been poured out totally and consumed as proof of its love". After celebrating Mass in the Shrine of Paray-le-Monial, we will start a guided visit that features the Chapel of Apparitions, the place where St. Margaret Mary Alacoque experienced visions of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the 17th century, the room of the relics of St. Margaret Mary, the Diorama of St Margaret and the Eucharist Museum. Other highlights include the Basilica of Sacre Coeur and the Chapel of St. Claude in honor of St. Margaret Mary's Spiritual Director. Dinner and overnight at Paray Le Monial.
Day 8, Mon, June 7: Paray Le Monial – Ars sur Formans – Lyon
Following breakfast you will visit the Chapel of the Visitation, where Jesus exposed His Sacred Heart to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, in the seventeenth century. These apparitions allowed St. Margaret to rest herself upon Jesus' Sacred Heart, and to experience the unconditional love for humanity. During your visit to this Holy place, you will have the opportunity to view relics of the beloved Saint, located beneath a wax figure of her. We will continue towards Ars, where we will visit the Shrine dedicated to Saint Jean Marie Vianney, the patron saint of the priesthood. In Ars, we will be able to visit the presbytery and the Basilica where we will find the incorrupt body of the Cure of Ars, and to enjoy a short documentary about his life. Following visit of Ars we will drive to Lyon, our final destination for next 3 nights.
Day 9, Tue, June 8: Lyon
Enjoy a nice breakfast before we start our day. Lyon stands on the site of the ancient Roman city called Lugdunum, founded in 43 BC, which was the capital of Gaul, and later, became a major Christian center. This city is filled with renowned history, culture, and architecture. This morning we will enjoy a tour of Lyon, including a visit to the Basilique Notre-Dame of Fourviere, which was built after the Franco-Prussian War when the people of Lyon had vowed to create a Marian sanctuary if their city was spared. The Basilica is a blend of Gothic and Byzantine styles with a richly decorated interior. Fourviere Hill provides a sensational panoramic outlook onto the city of Lyon. The views extend to the Croix-Rousse and the Terreaux districts, the Quartier Saint-Jean and the Place Bellecour. Remained of the day is free for prayer and reflections. Dinner and overnight in Lyon.
Day 10, Wed, June 9: Lyon – La Salette – Lyon
After breakfast, we depart for La Salette located in a high alpine pasture in the French Alps. La Salette is the site where the Virgin Mary appeared in 1846 to two shepherds, Melanie Matthew and Maximin Gird. Our Lady appeared to these shepherds crying, lamenting over the lack of observance of Sundays and the profaning of her Son's holy name. A spring forever marks the spot where the Virgin appeared and where millions of pilgrims come, in order to drink the fresh spring water and to pray. The stunning mountain scenery and lush mountain trails make La Salette one of the most spectacular pilgrimage sites in France, with a beautiful Basilica built to honor the Virgin Mary. In 1996, La Salette celebrated the 150th anniversary of Our Lady's first appearance. We return to Lyon for dinner and overnight.*206 Tours Disclaimer:
Occasionally local religious and national holidays, weather, traffic conditions and other events may necessitate changes in the sequence of events or the missing of certain events/places. Though every effort will be made to follow the itinerary, it should be considered as an indication, rather than a contract of events and places to be visited.
Day 11, Thu, June 10: Lyon - USA
This morning, you will begin with breakfast and continue with a transfer to the Lyon airport for your return flight(s) home.
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