It was sad that we were unable to travel to Lourdes for our annual diocesan pilgrimage this year but we offer our thanks to Bishop Mark, the clergy and all who presented the various liturgies and events online during the Virtual Pilgrimage.
We also thank those whose technical skills allowed us to view the full programme of events during the week so that we could enjoy the next best thing to being there.
The 2021 pilgrimage will be our 70th Annual Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes. Planning is already underway so we look forward to seeing you all again in Lourdes.
It is with a heavy heart and great sadness that after consultation with the Bishop, our chief medical officer and matron and other key members of our planning team it has been decided that due to the Covid 19 pandemic we have had to cancel our 2020 Pilgrimage. At this stage it is impossible to say whether travel to Lourdes would be possible in July but given the present lockdown and need for self-isolation and social distancing it is impossible for us to organise the necessary training of volunteers and assessment of our assisted pilgrims. Our doctors and nurses are at the frontline of caring for the victims of the pandemic and their focus has to be on that enormous responsibility at this time. I will be writing to all those who have already made bookings for this year’s pilgrimage through our Pilgrimage Office offering them a full refund of monies paid. I am sure that this will be a huge disappointment to all of you as it is to me and my team but the safety and welfare of all our pilgrims is our absolute priority. Let us hold all those associated with our pilgrimage in prayer at this time and ask once again for the protection of Our Lady of Lourdes and St Bernadette:
Our Lady of Lourdes: Pray for us
St Bernadette: Pray for us.
Fr David Long
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