Rome, Assisi & the Holy Land Pilgrimage
Moderate – High
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
May the Most High give you peace. That was the greeting of Francis of Assisi as he went about through the world. Coming to know God’s peace will be our goal as pilgrims “In the Footsteps of Saint Francis following Jesus.” As a man of his time, Francis enjoyed material wealth in Assisi, but when Francis went as a pilgrim to Rome and the Holy Land, as shall we, God granted him spiritual wealth through encounters with nature, beauty, lepers, and strangers. In Rome we will remember Francis before the Pope and among the people. From the Holy Land, Francis brought the memory of Christ’s Birth and the Way of the Cross home with him, and we will bring them home in our hearts. Members of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre visiting the Holy Land are required to pray at the Holy Sepulchre, and we will all pray together there and at many other holy places entrusted to my Franciscan brothers for 800 years. Pilgrims together in the footsteps of Francis, we will grow closer to Christ. Please sign up early so that you don’t miss the opportunity to join us!
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Fr. Jack Clark Robinson
Book With Confidence
All new travel bookings automatically come with our Book with Confidence Travel Plan*—free of charge. This plan gives pilgrims the ability to move their booking to another destination or simply a different available departure date in our vast travel portfolio, no questions asked. They just need to let us know 120 days* before departure and we’ll waive all penalties and get them booked on a new pilgrimage.
*The Book with Confidence Travel Plan allows for any new booking made with Holy Land Travel Center to be changed to a different destination or to another available departure date. Notice of change in travel plans must be given 120 days before departure; standard cancellation penalties will apply for full cancellation without rebooking or changes made within 120 days to departure. Applicable price and eligible promotions for the new tour will apply; if new trip is less expensive, a future travel credit will be issued for the difference in price. Cannot be applied to Passion Play Pilgrimages. No cash value. Credit is fully transferable. Offer reliant on space availability. Effective 10.7.2020. May be withdrawn at any time. Additional restrictions may apply; see Travel Terms & Conditions for details.
Arrival in Rome
Upon arrival in Rome, we are met by our Holy Land Travel Center Representative and immediately begin our pilgrimage by visiting the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls, which houses the remains of St. Paul under its main altar. Continue to our hotel for dinner and overnight. Overnight: Rome (Dinner)
After an early breakfast we depart for Vatican City, the spiritual capital for all Catholics around the world. Vatican City is its own city-state nestled within Rome, and it even has its own currency and postage! Today is truly a day which will live in our hearts for many years to come. We make our way to St. Peter’s Basilica where we will attend the Papal Audience given by His Holiness Pope Francis (*pending papal schedule). Time for lunch before we travel to Assisi in the Umbria Region. Overnight: Assisi (Breakfast, Dinner)
Following breakfast, we visit the sites of Assisi, birthplace of St. Francis, including the Basilica of Santa Maria Degli Angeli (Our Lady of the Angels). Inside this Basilica, we explore the Portiuncula, the Chapel of the Transitus, and the Rose Garden. We continue to the Basilica of St. Clare, the Town Hall Square, and the Basilica of St. Francis. Continue to our hotel for dinner and overnight. Overnight: Assisi (Breakfast, Dinner)
Today we depart for Rome. Upon arrival we visit the Basilica of St. John Lateran, which was the residence of the popes prior to returning to Rome in 1377. Next, we will see the Holy Stairs and the Basilica of St. Mary Major, one of the oldest shrines dedicated to the Blessed Virgin, which contains a relic from the manger of the infant Jesus. Dinner and overnight at our hotel. Overnight: Rome (Breakfast, Dinner)
This morning, we head to St. Peter’s Square for a guided tour of St. Peter’s Basilica. Here we celebrate Mass. We then head to the airport for our flight to Tel Aviv. Upon arrival into Tel Aviv, we will be greeted by our Holy Land Travel Center representative and tour guide who will be accompanying us during the pilgrimage. We will immediately transfer to our hotel in Bethlehem. Overnight: Bethlehem (Breakfast, Dinner)
Today we join local Christians to commemorate the triumphant entrance of Jesus into the city less than a week before the Crucifixion. The event is commemorated in the Liturgy with the Solemn Procession, which in the Holy Land follows roughly the same path that Jesus Himself took. The procession begins in the Franciscan Church of Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, and proceeds to the Church of Saint Anne in the Old City of Jerusalem. In the afternoon we drive to the Shepherd’s Fields where the angels announced the birth of Jesus. Then we visit the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem that stands upon the site where Jesus was born. Dinner and overnight at our hotel. Overnight: Bethlehem (Breakfast, Dinner)
After breakfast, we head to Caesarea by the Sea to visit the Roman Crusader remains before we continue to Haifa. Upon arrival in Haifia, we will visit Stella Maris, a Carmelite Monastery with the Madonna of Mt. Carmel. Next, we stop at the Baha’i Gardens, which includes a staircase of nineteen terraces extending all the way up the northern slope of Mount Carmel. We continue to Nazareth and the Basilica of Annunciation where we will celebrate Mass. We enjoy a visit to Joseph’s carpentry shop before we continue Cana, where couples will have the opportunity to renew wedding vows. We continue to Tiberias where we check into our hotel before dinner and overnight. Overnight: Tiberias (Breakfast, Dinner)
The Ministry of Christ in the Galilee
Some of today’s highlights are a boat ride across the Sea of Galilee to Capernaum to see the synagogue and St. Peter’s house, a visit to the Mount of the Beatitudes where the Sermon on the Mount was given, to Tabgha to see the splendid mosaic about the miracle of the loaves and fishes, and to the nearby Church of Peter’s Primacy where Peter was told ” Feed my lambs, feed my sheep.” There will be an unforgettable Mass near the shores of the Sea of Galilee at the Primacy or Mt. Beatitudes. Next, we head to the Magdala Center, the village of Mary Magdalene, where we visit the newly built church on site and the newly excavated ruins. In the afternoon we visit Caesarea Philippi, the location of the testimony of St. Peter and where Jesus answered him “You are the Rock and upon this rock I will build my Church.” Overnight: Tiberias (Breakfast, Dinner)
We start our morning at Mount Tabor, the site of the Transfiguration, where we celebrate Mass before we travel to the oasis town of Jericho. Here we visit the excavations of the oldest city in the world and view Mt. Temptation where Jesus fasted and was tempted by Satan. We are then led to the river Jordan where we remember Christ’s Baptism. We then visit Bethany where Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead before arriving in Bethlehem for dinner and overnight. Overnight: Bethlehem (Breakfast, Dinner)
This morning we head to Mount Zion, visiting the cave of Assumption (Dormition Abbey) of Mary to heaven. We visit the Church of St. Peter Gallicantu, where Peter denied Jesus three times. We then visit the Palace of Caiaphas, home of the corrupt Jewish high priest. We continue to the Upper Room. Onward to the Mount of Olives where Jesus prayed. We visit the church of Pater Noster where Jesus taught the disciples the Lord’s Prayer. We continue to Dominus Flevit, where Jesus wept over Jerusalem. Then to the Garden of Gethsemane, the Rock of Agony where Jesus prayed His last prayer before his arrest. Overnight: Bethlehem (Breakfast, Dinner)
Good Friday, The Passion of Jesus' Last Hours
This morning we retrace the last steps of Jesus as we walk along the Via Dolorosa, through the markets of the Old City praying the Stations of the Cross at each station shrine, we reflect on the greatness of His sacrifice. Finally, we arrive at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Dinner and overnight at our hotel. Overnight: Bethlehem (Breakfast, Dinner)
Holy Saturday, Jerusalem
This morning we head to the Village of Ein Karem, the birthplace of St. John the Baptist and to the Church of Visitation where the Blessed Virgin Mary visited her cousin, Elizabeth, and proclaimed the ‘Magnificat’. Continue to the Chapel of Ascension where Jesus ascended into heaven. We will participate in the evening Easter Vigil Mass. Overnight: Bethlehem (Breakfast, Dinner)
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