Pilgrimage 2016: September 9-11

This Year's Intention: Catholic Families

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The SSPX's longest-running annual pilgrimage in the USA is the Pilgrimage of Tradition to Auriesville, site of the National Shrine of the North American Martyrs near Albany, NY. The pilgrimage route goes along a ten mile stretch of the scenic Mohawk River to the hallowed ground of the shrine. "The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church." This adage literally occurred on that site, formerly known as the Mohawk village of Ossernenon. During the 1640s three French Jesuit missionaries - Father Isaac Jogues, Brother René Goupil, and Brother John Lalande - were killed by the Mohawks while bringing Christianity to the New World. These three along with five Jesuit priests martyred in Canada during the same decade were canonized by Pope Pius XI in 1930. The site is also under the patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary, as Our Lady of Martyrs, and has been a site of Catholic pilgrimage since at least 1884. It is also believed to be the 1656 birthplace of the Catholic convert Kateri Tekakwitha, Lily of the Mohawks. 

Nearly 600 SSPX pilgrims, including many priests and religious, attend this pilgrimage each year. It is organized by the SSPX’s Christ the King Chapel in Ridgefield, CT (home of St. Ignatius Retreat House). The pilgrimage, being principally a religious act, is a powerful supernatural means for traditional Catholics to obtain graces for themselves, their families, and their special intentions, which they carry in their hearts to Our Lady and her Martyrs. It also allows everyone to renew old friendships and start new ones, all in a wonderful spirit of camaraderie and prayer. The theme of the pilgrimage this year is “Catholic Families”. Among the many pilgrims and groups, a spirited contingent will also be present from BVM Academy of Syracuse, NY.

Friday, September 9: Set up camp at starting location. Holy Mass, plus other activities and devotions. Saturday, September 10: Pilgrimage to Auriesville and Solemn High Mass in the shrine church. Sunday, September 11: Holy Mass.