Section title text:  Our Spirit.

Pilgrimage

Ignatius of Loyola referred to himself as the pilgrim. Marie Madeleine's life journey took her to many places far from her birth place in Châteauroux and far beyond that experienced by most women of her time. We might call her life's journey a pilgrimage.

As Bríd Liston fcJ writes in A Pilgrim's Handbook, a pilgrimage is a journey in faith in search of wholeness. It is a journey to a holy place for religious motives. In life, our existence seems to prompt questions as to who we are, where we come from and where we are going to. So the very act of pilgrimage echoes questions that come to us from that deeper journey of the heart. There is a pilgrim in each and every one of us which is awakened gradually, Pilgrimage is not just travel to any place, but to a place which in itself is seen to have significance. It is a journey to a holy place.

Poem about walking with FCJs by Ian White.The places associated with the life and journeys of Marie Madeleine have deep significance for FCJ Sisters, Companions in Mission and friends of the Society.

The actions involved in pilgrimage reveal some steps that pilgrims take on their journey. They become a reflection of the life of faith as a whole: departure reveals the decision of pilgrims to go forward to their destination and to be open to the spiritual wonder of their baptismal call; walking leads them in solidarity with their sisters and brothers in the necessary preparation for a meeting with God; the visit to the holy places invites them to listen to the word of God, to listen to where God is in their lives; the return in the end reminds them of their own task in life as witnesses of hope.

When you have the time to make a pilgrimage to the places important in the life of Marie Madeleine, we invite you to move reflectively through the images below, pondering the text which accompanies them.


 

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Let us ask Our Lord to give us the spirit of the Society of Jesus;
        since we have its Constitutions, it is God's will
                    that we should have its spirit.     (Marie Madeleine)