Archbishop Kieran O’Reilly leads largest ever Cashel & Emly diocesan pilgrimage to Lourdes

20 Jun, 2017 | News

Almost 500 pilgrims from the Archdiocese of Cashel & Emly are currently undertaking a pilgrimage to the Marian Shrine in Lourdes. The annual diocesan pilgrimage this year began on Friday 16 June and will continue until Wednesday 21 June.

The pilgrimage, which is the largest to date for the archdiocese, is led by Archbishop Kieran O’Reilly, Archbishop of Cashel and Emly, who is accompanied by Archbishop Emeritus Dermot Clifford and fourteen priests.

As part of the almost 500 pilgrims traveling to Lourdes, there are 76 assisted pilgrims, 60 carers, and two doctors. Sick pilgrims requiring assistance during the pilgrimage are given special accommodation with medical supervision in the Accueil Notre Dame.

This year’s pilgrimage features a special youth section for those aged 18–30, which includes a group of more than 70 youth pilgrims and leaders from the archdiocese.

Lourdes, a small market town lying in the foothills of the Pyrenees, rose to prominence in 1858 due to the Marian apparitions seen by Bernadette Soubirous, who was later canonised. Today, Lourdes hosts around six million visitors every year from all corners of the world. This constant stream of pilgrims and tourists has transformed Lourdes into the second most important centre of tourism in France, second only to Paris, and the third most important site of international Catholic pilgrimage after Rome and the Holy Land.

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