The Diocese of Wilmington will hold its annual Marian Pilgrimage at the Shrine of Our Lady Queen of Peace at Holy Spirit Church, 12 Winder Road, New Castle, Delaware. The event, held every year to honor the Blessed Virgin Mary, will take place on Saturday, September 27, 2014. All parishioners from parishes in the state of Delaware and Maryland’s Eastern Shore are invited to attend.
The pilgrimage activities will begin at 1:00 pm in the church. There will be Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, a Holy Hour with mediations given by Reverend Andrew Apostoli, C.F.R., and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. Father Andrew is a member of the Community of Franciscan Friars of the Renewal. He has been active in teaching, preaching retreats, and producing various television series for EWTN. Father Andrew has written numerous books and pamphlets and many of his talks are available on video, DVD, CD and cassette tape. He has preached a retreat for the priests of the Diocese of Wilmington and also a Holy Hour at one of the Diocesan Pilgrimages to the National Shrine of The Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C.
At 2 pm, all in attendance will have the opportunity for private celebration of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and a visit to the outdoor Stations of the Cross which surround the Shrine Statue of Our Lady Queen of Peace. Pilgrims are most welcome to visit the expanded Shrine Gift Shop staffed by the Sisters of Caterina Benincasa Dominican Monastery, located at the parish. There will also be time for refreshments and for viewing exhibits of various diocesan organizations and apostolate in the parish hall.
The pilgrimage Mass will begin at 4:00 pm with the Most Reverend W. Francis Malooly, Bishop of Wilmington, as celebrant and homilist. The 4:00 pm Mass will fulfill the Sunday obligation. At the Mass, music will be provided by the choir from St. Joseph on the Brandywine Parish. Priests of the Diocese have been invited to concelebrate and deacons will be attending in vestments. The Knights of Malta, Knights of the Holy Sepulcher, Knights of Peter Claver and Knights of Columbus have been invited to attend in uniform.
There is no charge for the pilgrimage. A collection will be taken at Mass to support the parish’s maintenance of the shrine.
Following Mass at 5:00 pm, Bishop Malooly will lead the congregation in procession outside to the Shrine of Our Lady Queen of Peace for the recitation of the Rosary, the Litany of Loretto and the Renewal of the Consecration of the Diocese of Wilmington to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This will conclude the pilgrimage at approximately 6:00 pm.
While parking spaces are plentiful at Holy Spirit Parish, carpooling is encouraged. Last year, a few parishes outside of New Castle County provided bus transportation to the pilgrimage. If such is the case this year, Holy Spirit parish office should be notified so that provisions for parking of buses on the property can be provided.
The Shrine takes its name from the statue of the Blessed Mother Mary which was designed and constructed of steel by Charles C. Parks. The building of the shrine was made possible by supporters who raised $500,000 over 8 years so that Delaware could have a statue of its own, similar to two other statues of Our Lady made by Charles C. Parks which are in Santa Clara, CA and Chicago, IL. The statue of Our Lady Queen of Peace on the grounds of Holy Spirit Parish is near the Delaware Memorial Bridge and is visible to travelers on I-495 going to and from NJ.