Road Journal, Week 1: The Journey Begins

June 6, 2024

What is, perhaps, the greatest Eucharistic procession in history kicked off this past weekend in four U.S. dioceses on the Feast of Pentecost. Starting at the outermost edges of our country, each route will trace a path across our nation, converging at the National Eucharistic Congress in Indianapolis this July.

Here’s a quick recap of the key events that took place over the weekend.

Marian Route (North)

Following the Star of the North Eucharistic Congress, which kicked off the Marian Route, Bishop Andrew Cozzens celebrated an outdoor Mass in Itasca State Park at the headwaters of the Mississippi River. There, he blessed the waters before beginning a one-mile Eucharistic procession with about 2,000 fellow pilgrims.

In his homily, Bishop Cozzens observed that Pentecost was, itself, a revival, when the Holy Spirit was first poured out on the Apostles. It was fitting, then, that the Pilgrimage should begin on this sacred feast as part of the National Eucharistic Revival.

Bishop Andrew Cozzens during the consecration at an outdoor Mass in Itasca State Park

St. Juan Diego Route (South)

Meanwhile—on the opposite side of the nation in Brownsville, Texas—the Juan Diego Route began with a bilingual Mass celebrated by Bishop Daniel Flores at the Immaculate Conception Cathedral. Reflecting on the gift of the Eucharist, Bishop Flores reminded pilgrims that “God knows nothing except to give himself” and that he desires “to pour himself out Eucharistically and to pour himself out in the Spirit.”

Despite the 90-degree heat, pilgrims joyfully joined the opening Eucharistic procession as the Pilgrimage started making its way through the Diocese of Brownsville.

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Route (East)

The Seton Route began at St. Mary’s Church in New Haven, Connecticut, the site where Blessed Michael McGiveny—founder of the Knights of Columbus—is buried. Archbishop Christopher Coyne celebrated an extended Pentecost Vigil Mass, followed by overnight Eucharistic adoration.

Archbishop Coyne remarked how the Pilgrimage kick-off was a “wonderful celebration of the whole community in the Archdiocese of Hartford.” Looking ahead to the National Eucharistic Congress, where the Seton Route will meet with the other three routes, he observed that this event won’t be “an end in itself” but a “Eucharistic Pentecost moment” when the Church will be “lit with the fire of the love of the Eucharist,” empowering Catholics to go forth to share the Gospel with others.

On Pentecost Sunday, the Pilgrimage continued with a local procession before heading to Long Wharf for a boat procession to the Diocese of Bridgeport. Upcoming route destinations include the Archdiocese of New York as well as the Diocese of Brooklyn.

The National Eucharistic Pilgrimage kicks off in New Haven, CT

St. Junipero Serra Route (West)

On the West Coast of the United States, the Serra Route began in San Francisco with a procession across the Golden Gate Bridge. Nearly 4,000 pilgrims gathered for this historic procession. In a report from Aleteia, a photographer missed the picture-perfect moment when the procession kicked off. But this missed opportunity reminded him how, though it seems like the pilgrims are the ones pursuing Jesus, “in reality, in the great scheme of things, we don’t have to pursue Him; He pursues us.”

Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone celebrated Mass at the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption before the procession. Afterward, he blessed the crowds as they prayed and sang together in the Presence of Our Eucharistic Lord.

Visit our interactive map to find where the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage will be traveling nearest to you, and register to attend any of the hundreds of free events. Come walk with Jesus!

Back to Blog