Twenty-five parishioners from Oxford and York went with Frs Daniel and Richard to the shrines of various saints in Italy in September.
In Rome we celebrated Mass near the tomb of St Peter:
We were also able to offer Mass at the tomb of our Holy Father St Philip at the Chiesa Nuova:
This year is the Jubilee Year of St Aloysius - the 450th since his birth, and so one particular goal of our pilgrimage was to venerate him.
The altar where St Aloysius is enshrined in the church of Sant'Ignazio:
A painting showing Aloysius picking up a dying man from the street:
There was also time to enjoy la dolce vita:
In Cascia, we venerated St Rita, the patroness of hopeless cases.
The monks of Norcia, the birthplace of SS Benedict and Scholastica, had their monastery destroyed by the earthquake in 2016, along with all thirteen churches of Norcia. The monks have moved up into the hills above the city, where they have constructed a simple, wooden monastery and sleep in a dormitory. Our coach had some difficulty reaching the remote spot up the hill, and we had to clamber up the last approach - but we got there:
Our pilgrims were deeply moved by the Solemn Mass for St Matthew's Day.
With the Prior of Norcia, Fr Benedict:
Spot the donkey:
In Assisi we prayed at the tombs of St Francis and St Clare.
Here is some of the group in front of the Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli:
We were also able to celebrate Mass at Isola del Gran Sasso at the shrine of the Passionist St Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows - patron of our noviciate. This is the second most-visited shrine in Italy. Here is the altar of the San Gabriele in the old basilica.
The doors of the new basilica:
Finally, we visited the Holy House of Loreto, the place where the Incarnation took place: