The fifth day of our pilgrimage in Lourdes was marked by a Mass in the Grotto where Mary had appeared to Bernadette, and the Blessed Sacrament procession led by the Diocese of Westminster.
Cardinal Vincent celebrated Mass for the feast of St Joachim and St Anne, the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and gave a particularly poignant homily about the building up of the Church starting in the family.
The foundation of the Christian family, he said, is prayer and it is therefore essential that parents and grandparents hand this gift on to the young people that they have been entrusted with.
Truly it was a beautiful Mass under the watchful eye and protection of Our Lady, who instructed St Bernadette to tell the priests to ‘build a chapel’ when she visited her, and these words are the theme of this year's pilgrimage.
After lunch it was the turn of our diocese to lead an incredible Blessed Sacrament procession, with around 10,000 people processing to the Underground Basilica for a time of Adoration.
There were people from all over the world, many of whom were young people heading towards Lisbon for World Youth Day.
Despite such a crowd, when the Lord was exposed on the altar, silence reigned until the liturgy was brought to a close with the Cardinal giving Benediction.
Tomorrow will be our final day before heading back to London. We will be lighting our pilgrimage candle as a sign of all the prayers we leave with our Mother, Mary.