Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Significance of Pilgrimage

As Christianity is born in the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, so from the earliest times the Christian community has honored the mortal remains of the martyrs and saints, recalling how their lives mirrored the Gospel, and how their passage to Glory is an encouragement to the living to persevere in faith and witness.

The pilgrimage of the casket of Don Bosco recalls the ancient devotion of the faithful to the cult of the martyrs and saints as ultimately a devotion to Christ Resurrected. This event introduces the Salesian Family to the 200th anniversary of the birth of Don Bosco in 2015 (as the pilgrimage is ongoing from 2009 through 2014.

The pilgrimage is an occasion to study Don Bosco’s life and mission, so that testimony of his life will help us to imitate his faith, his love of the Lord and his zeal for all people, but above all for the young and the poor.

The pilgrimage is a worldwide event. The 3 weeks that the relics will be in our province is part of a larger journey. In a real sense, then, Don Bosco’s “visit” to the US and Canada is a visit to the churches and societies today, that would become an invitation to a renewed sense of faith among youth and young adults, and the wider Catholic population in solidarity with the rising generations.

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