The Mystical Roads of Spain and Fatima

March 27 – April 5, 2000

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La Basílica del Pilar, Zaragoza


Monday, March 27 – Day 1

This afternoon, we depart from JFK Airport on board our overnight TWA flight to Barcelona. We will be served complimentary beverages, in-flight movies, dinner and breakfast aloft.

Tuesday, March 28 – Day 2

This morning we arrive in Barcelona where we will-enjoy an orientation tour of the capital city of Catalonia, the center of commerce and industry. We will visit the Cathedral of Santa Cruz, where we will celebrate Mass, pass by the Exchange and visit the Church of the Holy Family, Antoni Gaudi’s religious masterpiece. Dinner and overnight at our hotel in Barcelona.

Wednesday, March 29 – Day 3

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Benedictine Monastery, Montserrat

We depart Barcelona and travel to Montserrat where we visit the Benedictine Monastery of Montserrat, the spiritual center of Catalonia. Founded in 986, it houses the statue of the Virgin of Montserrat. We then continue through the ancient kingdom of Aragon to Zaragoza where we will tour the Basilica of “El Pilar,” the home of “Our Lady of the Pilar,” which commemorates the apparitions of Our Lady to St. James in 40 c.e. We will celebrate Mass at the Basilica. Dinner and overnight at our hotel in Zaragoza. We will gather this evening for introductions of old and new friends.

Thursday, March 30 – Day 4

This morning we will celebrate Mass at La Seo, the remarkable Cathedral of Zaragoza, and tour the Cathedral, including its museums. We leave Zaragoza and travel south to Madrid. We visit all the highlights of Madrid, the capital of Spain, including the Gran Via, Plaza de Espana, the Viaduct, Plaza Mayor, the Bull Ring, Independence and Cibeles Squares, the University, and the Paseo de la Castellana. Dinner and overnight at our hotel. In the evening, you may wish to walk in Old Madrid, including Puerta del Sol and Plaza Mayor.

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Alcázar of Toledo

Friday, March 31 – Day 5

Our full day excursion today takes us to Toledo where St. John of the Cross spent much of his life and where the Middle Age Christian, Jewish, and Moorish cultures co-existed for many years. Among other sites, we will see the imperial residence of Alcazar, the 13th century Synagogue, El Greco’s masterpiece, “The Burial of the Count of Orgaz,” and the Gothic Cathedral where we will celebrate Mass. We return to Madrid for dinner and overnight. We will gather this evening for sharing about the pilgrimage.

Saturday, April 1 – Day 6

This morning, after Mass at the Church of San Antonio De La Florida, we will visit Madrid, including the Gate of Alcala, Retiro Park, the Puerta del Sol, the Royal Palace, and the famous Prado Museum. In the afternoon, we depart Madrid and drive towards Avila. On route, we visit the famous spot of El Escorial. Dinner and overnight at our hotel in Avila.

Sunday, April 2 – Day 7

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The charming village of Avila is the birthplace of St. Teresa of Jesus (1515-1582), one of the Church’s greatest and most influential mystics. We visit the Church of St. Teresa, built on the site of her house. We visit the Cathedral and celebrate Mass at the Convent of the Incarnation, where St. Teresa spent 20 years before beginning her reforms. The afternoon is free for prayer and leisure. Dinner and overnight at our hotel. We will gather this evening for prayer and reflection.

Monday, April 3 – Day 8

Today, we depart Avila and drive to Salamanca where St. Theresa died in a nearby  village called Alba de Tormes. Her body is in a reliquary in the main altar or the Carmelite Convent Church where we will celebrate Mass. We continue to drive west into Portugal and arrive in the early evening in Fatima. Dinner and overnight at or hotel.

Tuesday, April 4 – Day 9

After Mass at the Capelinha (little chapel), we visit the Basilica and Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima and the birthplaces of Francisco, Jacinta and Lucia to whom the Virgin appeared for the first time on May 13, 1917. The afternoon is free for private prayer. This evening we celebrate our farewell dinner at our hotel.

Wednesday, April 5 – Day 10

Today we drive from Fatima to the Lisbon airport for our return flight home. We arrive at JFK in the late afternoon with unforgettable memories to cherish always.