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Eight full airplanes ferry 2,000 Dublin pilgrims to Lourdes

By editor - 08 September, 2016

"In Lourdes we learn that happiness can well be found in those who have little to offer in worldly terms.”

7.9.16 2000 DUBLINERS TO CROSS HOLY DOOR IN LOURDES. In a unique ceremony to mark the Jubilee Year of Mercy called by Pope Francis almost 2000 pilgrims from Dublin will process through a Holy Door of Mercy at Lourdes in France this week. The group is travelling to the marian shrine in south west of France for the 67th Dublin Diocesan Pilgrimage. It is the largest religious pilgrimage of it's kind to leave Ireland every year. It will be led by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin with 8 full flights leaving Dublin airport over two day's. 183 sick and elderly people are among those travelling to Lourdes, some are highly dependant, but each person will have an extraordinary level of support with nurses, doctors, priests, lay volunteers and young students all travelling to help. Among the pilgrim group are 45 nurses, 9 doctors 130 secondary school students 41 priests and 480 lay volunteers. Pic shows David Morgan with Ailis Travers photographed at Dublin Airport on Wednesday morning (7.9.16) as they set out for Lourdes on the 67th Dublin Diocesan Pilgrimage. Pic John Mc Elroy. NO REPRO FEE. Further info Annette O' Donnell (01) 8360723 087 8143462

David Morgan with Ailis Travers at Dublin Airport as they set out for Lourdes on the 67th Dublin Diocesan Pilgrimage. Pic John Mc Elroy.

The largest religious pilgrimage to leave Ireland annually is underway with eight full airplanes ferrying up to 2,000 Dublin pilgrims to Lourdes.

183 sick and elderly people are among those travelling to the French shrine.

All will have the support of nurses, doctors, priests, lay volunteers and young students.

The 67th Dublin Diocesan Pilgrimage group includes 45 nurses, 9 doctors, 130 secondary schools students from 21 different schools, 160 youth group members, 41 priests and 480 lay volunteers.

Following the opening Mass of the 2016 pilgrimage, the 2,000 participants in the Dublin pilgrimage will process from the Lourdes Grotto along a Way of Mercy and through the Holy Door at the shrine to mark the Jubilee Year of Mercy called by Pope Francis.

7.9.16 2000 DUBLINERS TO CROSS HOLY DOOR IN LOURDES. In a unique ceremony to mark the Jubilee Year of Mercy called by Pope Francis almost 2000 pilgrims from Dublin will process through a Holy Door of Mercy at Lourdes in France this week. The group is travelling to the marian shrine in south west of France for the 67th Dublin Diocesan Pilgrimage. It is the largest religious pilgrimage of it's kind to leave Ireland every year. It will be led by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin with 8 full flights leaving Dublin airport over two day's. 183 sick and elderly people are among those travelling to Lourdes, some are highly dependant, but each person will have an extraordinary level of support with nurses, doctors, priests, lay volunteers and young students all travelling to help. Among the pilgrim group are 45 nurses, 9 doctors 130 secondary school students 41 priests and 480 lay volunteers. Pic shows some of the Nurses, students and lay volunteers photographed at Dublin Airport on Wednesday morning (7.9.16) as they set out for Lourdes on the 67th Dublin Diocesan Pilgrimage. Pic John Mc Elroy. NO REPRO FEE. Further info Annette O' Donnell (01) 8360723 087 8143462

Pic John Mc Elroy

One of the features of the Jubilee Year is the granting of an indulgence once you have crossed through a Holy Door and have fulfilled one of the other conditions, which includes caring for the sick.

The faithful also stop in prayer to fulfil the final actions asked for: the profession of faith, and prayer for the Pope and his intentions.

Speaking ahead of departure, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin described Lourdes as “a place of mercy, where we learn mercy though seeing mercy and through being merciful.”

He said “Lourdes can bring out the best in us. Our helpers support our sick and learn from our sick. That is why they come back year after year and we are deeply grateful to them.”

Fr John Jatau chatting with Joseph Hoey and other pilgrims from Most Holy Redeemer Church in Bray at Dublin Airport as they set out for Lourdes. Pic John Mc Elroy.

Fr John Jatau chatting with Joseph Hoey and other pilgrims from Most Holy Redeemer Church in Bray at Dublin Airport as they set out for Lourdes. Pic John Mc Elroy.

Archbishop Martin said that in Lourdes “our young people learn that happiness and fulfilment are not to be found in the superficial attractions of consumerist fashion. In Lourdes we learn that happiness can well be found in those who have little to offer in worldly terms.”

The Director of the pilgrimage, Fr Martin Noone, expressed a special word of welcome to the young people who have returned to volunteer againt this year.

“We have a happy situation with the Lourdes Pilgrimage in that it continues to inspire young people – over 160 are taking part this year, many of whom first travelled as secondary schools students.”

Fr Noone said that they choose to return year after year “is a real source of inspiration and I wish to express my gratitude to each of them.”

Dublin secondary school, St Paul’s in Raheny, is joining the pilgrimage this year for the first time.

With other students, participants will volunteer for long days in Lourdes helping the sick and elderly participate in Mass, prayer services and social events throughout the week.

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