Goins Marian Shrines
Monday, November 6 - DAY 1 - DEPART - We depart Omaha to connect with our overnight flight arriving the next day. We enjoy in-flight movies, dinner and breakfast aloft. Tuesday, November 7 – Election Day - DAY 2 - MADRID - This morning we arrive in Madrid where we are met by our guide. We visit highlights of Madrid, capital of Spain, including the Gran Via Plaza de España, the Viaduct, Plaza Major, passing by the Bull Ring, Independence and Cibeles Squares, the University, and the Paseo de la Castellana. Later we make our way to our hotel for dinner and overnight Wednesday, November 8 – Day 3 – AVILA/ SALAMANCA – Following breakfast, we drive west to the charming village of Avila, the birthplace of St. Teresa of Jesus, (1515-1582), one of the Church's greatest and most influential mystics. Here we will also visit the Cathedral and the Convent of the Incarnation, where St. Teresa lived for three decades and St. John of the Cross, her spiritual director and confessor lived for the last two years of her life. We celebrate Mass here. This afternoon we continue to Salamanca. St. Theresa died in a village called Alba de Tormes near Salamanca -- a little over 50 miles from Avila. Her body is in a reliquary in the main altar of the Carmelite Convent Church there. Dinner and overnight at our hotel here. Thursday, November 9 - DAY 4 - FATIMA – This morning we depart Segovia and continue westerly into Portugal and to Fatima. We arrive midafternoon and celebrate Mass in a private chapel. The balance of the day is at leisure. Dinner and overnight at our hotel. In the evening, we join other pilgrims in our International Rosary Procession. Friday, November 10 - DAY 5 - FATIMA – This full day is devoted to visiting the Basilica and Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima and nearby hamlets of Aljustrel and Valinhos. We join the English language concelebrated Mass at the Chapel of Apparitions. We visit the birthplaces of Francisco, Jacinta and Lucia, the Loca de Anjo and the Holy Way. In the evening, we join the International Rosary Procession. Dinner and overnight at our hotel. Saturday, November 11 - DAY 6 - FATIMA/ SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA - Today we depart Fatima, passing by the ancient capital and university city of Coimbra, where Lucia, the last Fatima visionary lived as a cloistered nun. We continue northwards into Spain and on to Santiago de Compostela, one of the most famous shrines in the western world. This is the site of the ancient pilgrimage to the Shrine of St. James. Tradition holds that the Apostle James was cast ashore here preaching for seven years and being responsible for the conversion of Spain before returning to the Holy Land. The Cathedral of 11th to 13th century with its splendor, and the portico are masterworks of Romanesque art. On arrival, this afternoon, we enjoy a visit to the Cathedral and the Old City here. If possible, we will celebrate Mass at the Cathedral or another local church. While dinner is included at our hotel, the adventurous might consider enjoying the varied delights of the Galatian restaurants in the nearby Old City. Sunday, November 12 - DAY 7 -SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA/ LEON/SANTO DOMINGO DE SILOS/BURGOS- This morning, we head east to Leon, the city of the Castile region in northwestern Spain. We visit its Cathedral where we celebrate Mass. After lunch on our own, we continue to Santo Domingo de Silos, a Romanesque monastery where at 7pm, we pray the Vespers with the monks who are famous worldwide for their Gregorian Chants. Transfer to our hotel in Burgos for dinner and overnight. Monday, November 13 - DAY 8 - BURGOS/AZPEITIA/ LOURDES Today we celebrate Mass at the magnificent Burgos Cathedral one of the largest in Spain and burial place of Spain’s national hero, El Cid. We drive to the Sanctuary of St Ignatius of Loyola in Azpeitia where we visit the Basilica and his home. We continue northwards and cross the border into France. In late afternoon, we arrive in Lourdes for dinner before joining other pilgrims during an informal candlelight Pilgrim’s Procession. Overnight at our hotel. Tuesday, November 14 - DAY 9 - LOURDES - This day is spent in devotion to Our Lady of Lourdes. We celebrate Mass at the Grotto, with a morning orientation visit to the Shrine and a walking tour of Lourdes, visiting Boly Mill, where St. Bernadette was born, the Cachot, formerly used as a jail, where she lived during the apparitions, and the parish church. This afternoon is free for private devotions which could include the healing waters of the miraculous Lourdes spring. Dinner and overnight at our hotel. In the evening, we can once again join the Candlelight Marian Procession. Wednesday, November 15 - DAY 10 - LOURDES/ MONTSERRAT -This morning we depart Lourdes and traverse the Pyrenees southward entering northern Spain. We drive to Montserrat on the outskirts of Barcelona and celebrate Mass at the Monastery housing the famed Black Madonna. If possible we enjoy the mid-day music of the famous boys’ choir here. Dinner and overnight at our Monastery hotel here. Thursday, November 16 - Day 11 – BARCELONA - This morning we drive to Barcelona to celebrate Mass at the Cathedral. Afterwards we drive through the Gothic quarter bisected by the famous Ramblas and see the important new developments at the pleasure port where many of the Olympic events were held in 1992. We enjoy a spectacular view from the top of the Montjuic hill, pass by the Exchange and visit the Church of the Holy Family or Sagrada Familia, the still uncompleted masterpiece of Antoni Gaudi. Afterwards we visit the Unesco World Heritage "Park Guell" one of Gaudi's Masterpieces of "landscape architecture.” Following dinner on our own here in Barcelona, we return to Montserrat for overnight at our hotel. Friday, November 17 - DAY 12 - RETURN - We transfer to the airport for our flight home with unforgettable memories to cherish always.
Map Image: Goins Marian Shrines