Now that we live here across the street from the Shrine of Our Lady of Mariapoch, we were excited during our first summer to get involved with the annual eparchial pilgrimage at the shrine. During this year’s pilgrimage, August 15-16, we attempted to revive an abandoned custom of camping out on the grounds. It was a humble start, but we hope it will grow in the coming years. Most successful was the program we organized for teens. Approximately 30 teens and young adults camped out on Saturday night, prayed with us in our chapel, enjoyed a cookout and games, listened to two talks on the theme “O you through whom Joy will shine forth” and participated in other prayers and activities during the pilgrimage. We were especially proud of the youth choir which sang the Akathist to the Mother of God on Saturday evening. The teens were all a pleasure to be with and pray with.
On Sunday morning we gave tours of our house to pilgrims and then invited all to pray the 6th Hour with us in our chapel. The chapel—and the foyer outside of it—were packed, and the singing was incredible. We were so blessed to pray with these awesome pilgrims.
The pilgrims enjoyed the beautiful hierarchical Divine Liturgy on Sunday afternoon and Sr. Celeste’s delicious homemade chicken paprikas afterwards! Thank you to all those who joined us for the weekend or who prayed for its success.