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Registration open for diocesan section of the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage

As the country prepares for the 10th National Eucharistic Congress this summer in Indianapolis, Indiana, one major aspect of the Congress will be the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage. Dubbed “our national Emmaus moment,” the 60 days will feature four routes with 1,000 hosts and 6,500 miles traveled. According to Bishop Andrew Cozzins, chairman of the Board of Directors for National Eucharistic Congress, Inc., “The pilgrimage will be a powerful, once-in-a-lifetime witness of how Jesus Christ comes close to us and invites all to encounter Him in the Eucharist.”

The Diocese of Birmingham is fortunate to be part of the Juan Diego Route, which is the southern arm of the national pilgrimage. The route is named after St. Juan Diego, the first indigenous saint of the Americas, who was granted visions of the Blessed Mother, Our Lady of Guadalupe, in 1531.

A group of designated Perpetual Pilgrims have been assigned to the Juan Diego Route which will depart from Brownsville, Texas at the tip of the state, then wind its way around the Gulf of Mexico, passing through cities such as Houston, Texas; New Orleans, Louisiana; Biloxi, Mississippi; Mobile, Alabama; Atlanta, Georgia; Nashville, Tennessee; and Louisville, Kentucky, before reaching Indianapolis.

As the pilgrimage passes through the Diocese of Birmingham between June 17 and June 21, the Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Hanceville will host pilgrims, offering an Adoration Sodality Day of Recollection on June 20. The day will begin with Mass at 7 a.m. and confessions following. Breakfast will be available from 8-9:30 a.m., and a talk on the Eucharist will begin at 9:30 a.m. Starting at 10:30 a.m., tours will be available. Midday prayer and the Rosary will take place at 11:30 a.m. with lunch following. At 1:30 p.m., National Eucharistic Pilgrimage Perpetual Pilgrims will join a Eucharistic procession from the Grotto to the main church. Immediately after the procession, a Eucharistic Healing Service will begin, then the day will conclude with confessions and the Divine Mercy Chaplet.

Registration for the Adoration Sodality Day of Recollection, which is required, is open and free to those wishing to be a part of the pilgrimage. Please note that all members of the public who join segments of the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage are responsible for their own transportation, food, and lodging. Due to the distance that the Perpetual Pilgrims must cover in a short amount of time, and the desire to make each event safe for all, they aren't walking the entire route, and some walking segments aren't open to the public. The shrine is located at 3224 County Road 548 in Hanceville. To register, please visit