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Bishop John Wilson introduces this year's pilgrimage and shares how the first day unfolded:


Today was the first day of the 2018 Westminster diocesan pilgrimage to the Holy Land. We are 57 pilgrims in total and we had a good flight and coach journey to our hotel.

We are staying beside the Sea of Galilee and travelled to the Mount of the Beatitudes this morning for Mass. We prayed for peace in our world and in our hearts, and especially for peace in this Holy Land.

We then visited the Church of the Multiplication of Loaves and Fish, a  reminder that when we give even the little we have to the Lord, he can use and multiply it for the good.

Then on to Capernaum, the town of Jesus. We saw the remains of the house of St Peter and the ancient synagogue. It was in this site that Jesus preached and taught.

After lunching on St Peter’s fish, we took a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, stopping in the middle to pray. We remembered that Jesus came towards the disciples across the water and that he comes to be with us in all the challenges of life.

As we sailed, one of the pilgrims share her joy at being on the pilgrimage:

And Fr John Farrell OP, our spiritual director, led the pilgrims in 'Dear Lord and Father of Mankind'. This wonderful hymn reminded us that we too are called by the Lord. May we too respond as the Apostles did: 'let us let us, like them, without a word/rise up and follow thee'.

Finally, we visited the Church of the Primacy of Peter by the seashore of Galilee. This is where the risen Jesus appeared to the disciples. We recalled his questions to Peter: Do you love me? This is an important question for us to answer, knowing that we love Jesus because he loved us first. As we paddled in the water, the sun gently began to set on a beautiful day spent following the Lord’s footsteps. 

There are more photos from the day here.