July 28, 2006

Archdiocese to sponsor pilgrimage for October canonization

By Sean Gallagher

The Oct. 15 canonization of Blessed Mother Theodore Guérin at St. Peter’s Square in Rome will be a historic day that the faithful of the archdiocese can take part in through an Oct. 11-19 archdiocesan-sponsored pilgrimage.

On that day, Blessed Mother Theodore, the 19th-century foundress of the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, will become the first saint from Indiana and only the eighth from the United States.

“For anybody who is able to go with us on this pilgrimage, this is going to be a once-in-a-lifetime event,” said archdiocesan vicar general Msgr. Joseph F. Schaedel, who—along with Archbishop Daniel M. Buechlein—will lead the pilgrimage.

“There’s a great spiritual linkage between the people of the archdiocese and Mother Theodore and this canonization,” Msgr. Schaedel said. “She’s one of us.”

Carolyn Noone, archdiocesan associate director for special events, has organized many pilgrimages for the archdiocese. She said the one in October will stand out for her.

“It’s an excitement that we’ve not had before in pilgrimages,” she said. “It was extremely exciting to go to the beatification and for Indiana to have somebody who was called blessed. And now, to see this all come together after this length of time, it’s just a wonderful blessing for our state.”

In addition to witnessing the declaration of Blessed Mother Theodore’s sainthood, the pilgrims will also visit places closely connected with several other saints from Church history.

Upon arriving in Rome on Oct. 12, the pilgrims will travel by deluxe motorcoach to the Tuscan city of Siena, the home of St. Catherine of Siena.

Also included in the trip to Siena will be a visit to the Church of St. Francis, which features a special eucharistic miracle—the preservation of hosts consecrated more than 270 years ago.

Later in the pilgrimage, day trips from Rome will include Assisi, the home of St. Francis of Assisi and an optional one to Monte Cassino, the final home of St. Benedict.

The focus of the trip will, of course, be on the events related to the canonization in Rome.

On Oct. 14, Vespers on the evening before the canonization of Blessed Mother Theodore will be prayed in the Baroque Church of the Gesu.

The following morning, the pilgrims will participate in the canonization Mass to be celebrated by Pope Benedict XVI at St. Peter’s Square.

A Mass of thanksgiving will be celebrated on Oct. 16 at the Basilica of St. Paul Outside-the-Walls.

Events on Oct. 17 will include attending the pope’s weekly general audience.

In addition to the canonization liturgies, Mass will be celebrated each day with other regular opportunities for prayer and spiritual devotions.

The pilgrims will stay at four-star hotels throughout the pilgrimage, with most meals provided. Transpor-tation to all pilgrimage events is also provided.

For more information on the life of Blessed Mother Theodore and what the Sisters of Providence have planned for the canonization, log on to their Web site at www.spsmw.org.

(The cost of the archdiocesan pilgrimage is $3,089 per person for double occupancy and $3,731 per person for single occupancy. For more information, call Carolyn Noone at 317-236-1428 or 800-382-9836, ext. 1428, or e-mail her at cnoone@archindy.org.) †

Local site Links: