0903AA3 - Catholic Italy Pilgrimage 11 days from Indianapolis

Airline Name Baggage Information
American Airlines http://bit.ly/zRWIZO

Special Package with this Trip :
International departure taxes of $119 plus current fuel surcharges of $360 are included (subject to change).

Tour Code Departure Date Cost per person
AAA0903GS 09/03/2023 $4399.00
Trip Details

Today, we depart from Indianapolis to connect with our overnight flight to Rome aboard a wide-bodied jet. We enjoy in-flight movies, dinner, and breakfast while aloft.
This morning, we arrive in Rome and are greeted by our Tour Manager as we transfer to our deluxe coach bus and enjoy a driving tour of her many sites, following a stop for lunch on our own (pending exact flight times), as we conclude our day at one of the Catacombs, the burial places of early Christians. We celebrate Mass while here and view the 2nd and 3rd century fresco paintings. We then continue to our hotel for our “welcome” dinner and overnight at our hotel.
Following morning Mass at St. Peter's, we spend this morning viewing the treasures of the Vatican Museum. We marvel at Michelangelo's restored frescoes in the Sistine Chapel. Continue to St. Peter's Basilica to view the famous “Pieta”, as well as the famous Bernini alter columns, one Bernini engraved his own Rosary on and one contains the spear of St. Longinus, the roman centurion who pierced the side of our Savior and was healed by the blood and water that flowed from it! This afternoon, following lunch on our own, we visit two of Rome’s major basilicas, St. John Lateran, and St. Mary Major before concluding our day. Dinner and overnight at our hotel.
Today, we make our way to St. Peter's for an audience with Pope Francis (pending if he is in residence). After lunch on our own, we journey to the Roman Baths at Caracalla. We conclude our day at St. Paul’s Beyond the Walls. This huge, imposing Basilica, second only to St. Peter’s and one of the largest churches in the Christian world, contains an unusual gallery of papal portraits: 265 tablets portraying the popes of the past. Dinner and overnight at our hotel.
This morning, after breakfast at our hotel, we begin our walking tour viewing the splendors of baroque Rome: from the Spanish Steps to the spectacular Trevi Fountain, on to the amazing architecture of the Pantheon, and the lively atmosphere of Piazza Navona, with the Fountain of the Four Rivers by Bernini. Some free time for lunch on own before continuing our tour towards Ancient Rome including the Palatine Hill, the Coliseum where the gladiators used to fight, the Roman Forum that was the center of the city life, the arch of Titus and that of Constantine. Late in the afternoon we return to our hotel for dinner and overnight at our hotel.
Today, we have an early morning departure from Rome, as we travel north through the Umbrian countryside. We stop at Orvieto for a visit and Mass at the breathtaking Cathedral, which is known as the jewel of Italian architecture. Inside the Cathedral is the Chapel of the Corporal, which houses the chalice cloth involved in the Eucharistic Miracle, which occurred in nearby Bolsena. In the 1263AD, a pilgrim priest named Peter of Prague was celebrating Mass at the crypt of St. Christina. He was having a faith crisis concerning the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist and while speaking the words of the consecration, blood started to drip from the consecrated Host. Subsequently, the following year Pope Urban IV instituted the Feast of Corpus Christi. Following a stop for lunch on our own, we continue to Assisi. Our first stop is in the lower town for a visit to the Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels, and the Portiuncula, Francis' Church of the Little Portion. We thank St. Francis for two of his most notable gifts to humanity, the Nativity Scene and the Stations of the Cross. We then proceed to the hilltop village of Assisi for dinner and overnight at our hotel.
This morning, we begin with a short walk to the Basilica of St. Francesco for Mass. After our visit of the Basilica and the tomb of St. Francis, we begin our walking tour of the village with a visit to the Church of St. Clare “the little plant of Blessed Francis” as she loved to call herself, where we view the San Damiano crucifix that spoke to St. Francis. Kneeling before it, Francis composed the following prayer, which many consider to be among the oldest of his writings: “All Highest, Glorious God, cast your light into the darkness of my heart. Give me right faith, firm hope, perfect charity, and profound humility, with wisdom and perception, O Lord, so that I may do what is truly your most holy will. Amen.” A Eucharistic miracle is attributed to St. Clare which is worth noting. In 1240AD, a band of Saracen soldiers were attacking Assisi and had reached the cloistered convent of a now sickly St. Clare. In fear that the soldiers would harm her sisters, she prayed in front of the Blessed Sacrament for protection. Tradition tells us that Our Lord assured her His protections and when she held the monstrance in front of the soldiers, they fled! This afternoon, following lunch on our own, our taxis take us up to the Hermitage of the Carceri, where Francis and his Friars retreated from the world to pray and fast. Here the grotto of St. Francis can also be seen. We return to our hotel for dinner and overnight at our hotel.
Today, we travel south to the town of Cascia, where we make a brief stop at the Basilica of St. Rita. The Basilica not only contains her glass sarcophagus but also the relic of the Eucharistic Miracle of Cascia. In 1330AD, a local priest was called to visit an ill woman and bring her the Holy Eucharist. Oddly, rather than carry it reverently, he simply placed the host between a few pages in his prayer book. When he arrived to give her communion, the host had turned to blood and the blood stained both pages it was placed between! We continue east towards Ancona to visit and celebrate Mass at Loreto, the site of the “Santa Casa” or Holy House. Ancient tradition tells us that to avoid destruction by Muslim invaders to the Holy Land, on May 10, 1291, seven angels carried the house of the Holy Family from Nazareth to Dalmatia (modern Trsat, Croatia) and then Italy, where it eventually rested in Loreto. After our visit a short break for lunch on our own, before we continue southwards via the coastal highway to the Montesilvano Pescara area for dinner and overnight at our hotel on the shores of the enchanting Adriatic Sea.
This morning, we visit and pray at Lanciano, the site of the oldest Eucharistic Miracle certified by the Church. After almost eight centuries, the Body and the Blood still maintain all the characteristics of fresh human material! Following a stop for lunch on our own, we continue south to San Giovanni Rotondo, where we celebrate Mass at the tomb of St. Padre Pio and visit the sanctuary. We transfer to our hotel for dinner and overnight at our hotel.
Today, we depart for Subiaco. It was here that St. Benedict and his sister, St. Scholastica, retired at the end of the 5th Century and built five little monasteries. We visit the Monastery of St. Benedict, which dates from the 13th and 14th centuries. We visit the Sacred Cave where Benedict lived as a hermit for three years. The staircase holds the earliest portrait of St. Francis without his halo or stigmata. While there, we celebrate Mass. We stop for lunch on our own before continuing our journey back to Rome for our “farewell” dinner and overnight at our hotel.
This morning, we transfer to the airport for our flight to the U.S. arriving the same day with memories of a lifetime.