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Day 52 — The Pilgrimage Arrives in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis

GUILFORD, INDIANA, July 8 — The Seton Route of the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage crossed its last state and diocesan border as it moved from the Archdiocese of Cincinnati into the Archdiocese of Indianapolis, where it will remain through the National Eucharistic Congress scheduled to take place in the state capital July 17-21.

The day began with Mass at St. William's Church in Cincinnati celebrated and preached by pastor Father Zachary Cecil.

After Mass, there was an hour-long Eucharistic procession from St. Williams to St. Teresa of Avila parish in which Fr. Cecil and parochial vicar Father Arogya Gadagotti carried the Blessed Sacrament.

Having arrived at St. Teresa of Avila, which together with St. Lawrence and St. William constitutes the "Westside Catholic Family of Parishes," Fr. Cecil presided at Morning Prayer and then imparted Eucharistic benediction. After benediction, there was a nice breakfast prepared by the parish for the more than 100 pilgrims who had made the early morning pilgrimage between parishes.

After breakfast, Seton Route chaplain Father Roger Landry brought the Eucharist to the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage support van for mobile adoration as they journeyed to St. John the Baptist Church in Guilford, Indiana, the second oldest Catholic parish in Indiana, celebrating this year its bicentennial.

Upon arriving, Father Landry placed Jesus above the tabernacle of the high altar for adoration throughout the day until a 6:30 pm Mass and then in the sacristy greeted Father Jonathan Meyer and Father John Hollowell, pastors in solidum of the four parishes and three extra worship sites in Dearborn County.

Fathers Meyer and Hollowell treated the pilgrims to coffee and lunch at the Ars Cafe, established by the parish for outreach to the community. There, at Father Landry's request, they spoke about the parish's background as well as their own personal background. Father Meyer was the head of youth ministry for the Archdiocese of Indianapolis for many years and, like Father Landry, is a National Eucharistic Preacher. Hollowell is similarly a noted preacher who became very well known in 2018 for offering himself as a victim for victims of clergy sexual abuse before he was diagnosed with brain cancer, which led to surgeries and eventually to a healing at Lourdes.

During the afternoon, Father Landry gave a talk on St. John Paul II's Eucharistic legacy to parents of local Catholic school and to the Seton Route Pilgrims.

At 6:30 pm, there was a Mass celebrated by Father Meyer and concelebrated by Fathers Hollowell and Landry, by newly arrived Seton Route chaplain Fr. Giuseppe Siniscalchi, CFR, and by Father Francis Eckstein, a retired priest of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis. The Church of St. John the Baptist was standing room only. Father Landry preached.

In his homily, based on the readings of the day, Father Landry spoke about how the Lord want to lead us on pilgrimage. The Christian life is essentially, he said, a Eucharistic pilgrimage in which the Eucharistic Jesus always accompanies us.

The prophet Hosea, he said, shows us that that pilgrimage is, first and foremost, one of mercy and continuous conversion. Jesus fulfills the prophetic words given through Hosea when he says to us, "I will allure her; I will lead her into the desert and speak to her heart. She shall respond there as in the days of her youth, when she came up from the land of Egypt." These were words that led to the high school conversion of Seton Route pilgrim Natalie Garza, who has given several witness testimonies describing how the Eucharistic Jesus likewise wants to allure us to be with him, to speak to us heart to heart, to help us respond with our first love, and espouse us to him forever in right, justice, love, mercy and fidelity, so that we may indeed know him.

So our pilgrimage is one where God's mercy, love and fidelity calls us to back to be ourselves, but we have to be willing to make the journey of conversion, to draw apart from distractions and sinful attachments to attach ourselves to God, knowing that he will protect us in the wilderness and will renew us through his words, Landry stated.

He said that the Gospel shows us that the Eucharistic journey to which Jesus summons us is similarly one of healing and resurrection, as seen, respectively, in the healing of the woman with a hemorrhage for 12 years and the raising of the young daughter of Jairus the synagogue official.

Father Landry stated that the same Jesus meets us at Mass each day and wants to renew us in spousal love, have us truly know him as a friend and as a beloved, heal us of our wounds by purifying them with his precious Blood and raise us to life to the full with him in this world and next.

After the Mass, there was an ice-cream social as well as exposition of the Blessed Sacrament throughout the night.


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