Although it has not been possible to undertake any pilgrimages until very recently, due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, it is ordinarily a regular part of Catholic life. The Christian life is a journey towards God, and in this simple act of outward physical travel, whether on foot or by aeroplane, we inwardly seek to draw closer to Christ by putting time aside to consider our relationship with the Lord, and ask where he is leading us.
Hearts in Search of God: Pilgrimages in England and Wales
Hearts in Seach of God is a website offering a variety of walking Pilgrimage Ways within the Catholic dioceses of England & Wales. It includes three different but linked pilgrimages across the Archdiocese of Southwark, including
The Via Frangencia: Pilgrims to Rome
The pinnacle of pilgrim ways in Europe, the Via Francigena is a journey of a thousand miles which begins with a single step. St Augustine, who became the First Archbishop of Canterbury, was sent to convert the English to Christianity by Pope Gregory the Great, landing on the Isle of Thanet in 597 AD and setting about his mission in Canterbury. The Via Francigena itself begins in Canterbury, and passes through France and Switzerland before finally arriving in Rome. On this website you will find information on walking and cycling the route, particularly between its history, advice on when to go, and an accommodation list. There are details on how to join the Confraternity and receive our membership pack including your pilgrim credential.
The Holy Land
The Holy Land is an important place of pilgrimage for Christians, with the unique opportunity to walk in the footsteps of Christ and the Apostles, It offers the chance to bring the Gospel stories to life through the senses and to deeply consider the very roots of our faith.
Lourdes & St Bernadette
In 1858 the French fortress town of Lourdes, situated on the Gave de Pau River at the foot of the Hautes-Pyrénées was home to around 4,000 inhabitants. This relatively poor area was home to Soubirous family, who had fallen on such hard times that they were living in one room, known as the 'Cachot' or former gaol of the town. The eldest daughter of the family was Marie-Bernarde, whom we now know as Saint Bernadette. She was just 14 years old when the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to her at the Maissabelle Grotto whilst collecting firewood
The Relics of St Bernadette UK Tour 2022
This September and October, the UK will welcome the relics of St Bernadette, which will travel from the Upper Basilica in Lourdes to every Diocese in the UK, including the Archdiocese of Southwark. The invitation to host the relics was issued by the Shrine of Lourdes to the Bishops of England and Wales.