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English 3rd Age Pilgrimage to France

18/11/2015: General House - Photo gallery

From November 2 to November 13, 2015 sixteen Marist Brothers making the English 3rd Age Program at the General House in Rome as well as the team of two Brothers and their Marianist chaplain traveled to France to visit our Marist “foundation places.” 

For a number of our pilgrims, it was their second time visiting Notre Dame de l’Hermitage but the restorations made at the Hermitage as well as at the other Marist places were something very new and impressive for them.  In addition to the Hermitage, we also visited Marlhes, Le Rosey, La Valla, Les Maisonnettes, Fourvière, Le Puy, St. Genis Laval as well as the sites of the Montagne experience and the Memorare in the Snow.  We enjoyed the hospitality of the communities at Hermitage, La Valla and Le Rosey and were made to feel very much at home.

A special part of the pilgrimage experience – and one quite appropriate for our “Fourvière year,” was the chance to visit the foundation places of the other branches of our Marist Family and share Eucharist, prayer and a fine meal with each of them.  We traveled to La Neylière to visit the Marist Fathers and the South Pacific mission museum which they have recently opened and saw a very well done media presentation of the foundation of the Fathers.  We celebrated the Eucharist in the chapel there near the tomb of Father Colin.  On the morning of our visit to Fourvière, we made a stop at the Marist Missionary Sisters at St. Foy le Lyon.  There we saw an excellent presentation on the difficulties and successes of the foundation of our SMSM Sisters.  Once again we were privileged to share Eucharist with the Sisters and then we enjoyed a great meal and wonderful company.

Our final visit was to Belley and the Marist Sisters.  Sister Teri O’Brien was a great host to us giving an informative presentation on Jeanne Marie Chavoin and the foundation of the Sisters.  While in Belley, we also visited the site where the first Marist Fathers, Father Champagnat among them, made their first vows as Marists.

We returned to Rome very appreciative of our beginnings and also of our relationship with our other Marist branches.  Thank you to the community at the Hermitage for their many kindnesses to us during our stay and especially to our guide, Brother Allan De Castro.

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