Catholic Youth Parramatta

pilgrims PRAYER

A prayer for the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta's pilgrims travelling to World Youth Day 2011 Madrid.


Ever loving God, we give you thanks for the many blessing we receive in this life. Thank you for the gift of World Youth Day to our young people. We ask your blessing on all our Pilgrims at World Youth Day in Madrid. Bless them on their pilgrimage and help them to build on the many graces and experiences that were the fruit of the World Youth Day in Sydney.


Guide them along right paths by bestowing on them the power of the Holy Spirit, so that they may continue to be your witnesses in the world.


May this pilgrimage renew their faith and confidence in you, and strengthen the bond of communion as they journey together, so that the fruits of their experience might bring renewal to the Church of Parramatta.


We ask this through the intercession of Our Lady of the Southern Cross and in the name of our Lord Jesus, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit one God forever and ever.



Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop. Pray for us.

Blessed John Paul II. Pray for us.

Where our Lady appeared to St Bernadette


Thursday 11th August - Journey to Lourdes

Candlelight Procession
Candlelight Procession.

By Lisa Garland, Catholic Youth Parramatta

This morning we left our Ibis hotel, crossing the boarder into France. By bus it took about 7 hours with 2 stop overs. The first was at a gas station. I bought a long egg, tuna and ham baguette, chips, passionfruit ice tea and maltesers, mmmmmmmm maltesers. Our second stop over was at a fast food place/gas station. I had quiche and hot chips, mmmmmmm hot chips. We all struggled with the translation from Spanish to French then English. Surprisingly the trip went by really fast thanks to playing cards, talking and playing pass the parcel. Yes pass the parcel, thanks to our animation team.

We arrived in the beautiful town of Lourdes and checked in to our hotel. This time I was in a three person room with Rachel & Gerianne. I was excited to share a room with 2 other people, more fun right? Until we saw the beds. O.M.G. (oh my gosh) there wasn’t even a foot space between each bed. They were so close together it might as well have just been one king double bed! (not complaining).

We had our mass for the day by the river which was really nice. I was simple yet beautiful. Some of us went separate ways to do our own thing before dinner. Some went to put their feet in the river sitting on the rocks. The pebbles and water numbed our feet.

After dinner, we walked up to the grotto. A couple of months ago I decided to read a book on St Bernadette’s life to get more of an idea about her life and the apparitions. I think reading the book made me a lot more excited and anxious to visit Lourdes. The book had pictures taken of Bernadette and the grotto back when the Apparitions occurred and as soon as I rounded the corner and saw the grotto, I was just awestruck. The place where Bernadette knelt and saw our Lady was exactly like the pictures. I don’t know how to describe it properly but I was just so unbelievably happy. I felt like this was my new favourite place and could come here every day.

We joined in a beautiful candlelight procession, reciting prayers and singing songs, finishing at the sanctuary.

Before heading back to our hotel, we enjoyed a fun night in the city of Lourdes.

Posted by Lisa Garland at 8:55 AM

Tags: Pilgrim Way   Lisa Garland   WYD 2011 Madrid

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