The Catholic Pilgrimage is an opportunity to explore the spiritual underpinnings of the Holy Land, including how geography, history, and culture have shaped individual and theological understandings. Those who join us will be able to engage with locals at a more authentic, personal level, coming to a deeper appreciation of their experiences, their understanding of God’s plan, and their sense of how we can be brought together through love. An exploration of the history, culture, and spirituality of the Holy Land can make this a profound experience, helping participants build a deeper and more grounded faith.
Since November 28th, 1981, Kibeho is known to be a place of apparitions and pilgrimage. As Mons. Augustin Misago, Bishop of Gikongoro, wished it in his Declaration bearing the final judgement on the event of the “Apparitions of Kibeho” (N ° 14), Kibeho is called to become a place of prayer for God seekers, who come to ask for the grace of conversion, to offer their intentions in reparation of the sins of the world, and to promote reconciliation between individuals, communities or nations.
Kibeho is becoming a rallying point for “those who were dispersed”, as well as for those who live the values of compassion and brotherhood without limits. Even better, Kibeho becomes more and more to the world of today, which has a tendency to ‘consider the suffering as something to be avoided at all costs,’ a place to remind us of the Gospel of the Cross.
On the website of the Shrine of Our Lady of Kibeho, you will find necessary and reliable information on the Shrine, places of worship, and pastoral services found there. We hope that it will help you to understand and become familiar with the Shrine.
Can I go if I’m not Catholic?
Yes, all are welcome! Please be respectful to others on the trip and recognize that it will be centered around Catholic beliefs and rituals, including Mass at holy sites.
What makes this trip unique?
This Holy Land tour provides two opportunities you would not normally receive through a typical travel organization. First, you will have full Masses with music at holy sites. Music will also be performed as we travel the Stations of the Cross, renew our baptismal rites at the Jordan River, and sing carols as we approach the nativity site in Bethlehem. This creates an atmosphere of prayer and meditation as a pilgrim, not just a tourist. Second, we spend multiple days inside the West Bank (Jericho and Bethlehem) and do our best to learn from Palestinian Christians, the living stones of the Holy Land, who have kept the faith alive for thousands of years. We understand that Jesus cared about people, and so we do, too.
Can I travel Solo?
Absolutely! You will be paired with another solo traveler for your hotel stays. If you would like to have your own room, you’ll need to pay an additional $800 for the trip. If you or we cannot find another solo traveler for you to be paired with, you will need to pay the additional $800 for a single room.
Is it safe?
Yes. The news that you hear about rockets and violence centers around Gaza. We will be staying far away from Gaza. If for some reason, violence spreads outside of Gaza to an area where we are scheduled to visit, we will adjust our trip accordingly.
How will we travel around?
We’ll travel to Tel Aviv by plane and then will travel by air-conditioned bus for the rest of the sites. We will have a licensed tour guide with us for the entire trip as well as an experienced bus driver
What will food be like?
You’ll experience a mix of Middle Eastern and Western food. Hotel breakfasts and dinners often serve a variety of cuisine, including western selections. Lunches will be on-the-go and will often be Middle Eastern (think falafel, chicken kabob, pita bread, and hummus). Some days you’ll have the opportunity to walk and find a lunch that suits you. On other days, we’ll all eat lunch together. (Lunches are not covered in price). You are NOT forced to eat the meals at the hotels (although they are very tasty!). Feel free to venture out into the cities to eat whatever you like and experience more of the local cuisine.
How much walking will there be?
Quite a bit. You’ll need to be physically fit to attend this trip. The stones in the old cities are uneven and slippery, especially when wet and these old cities are unfortunately not handicap accessible. There will also be long hours of sitting on the bus to travel from city to city.
What are the accommodations like?
Please remember: this is a cultural immersion trip, not a luxury resort trip. Every hotel will be different. Some may feel like a vacation spot (e.g. Kibeho) while others may feel like you’ve stepped back 1,000 years (e.g. Nazareth).