Despite the ongoing pandemic and the enormous problems it causes, we wish to continue the 30 years tradition of pilgrimage from Chicago to Our Lady of Częstochowa Shrine in Merrillville. Following the decisions taken by the governors of Illinois and Indiana, the 33rd pilgrimage cannot be held in its usual form. However, we wish to invite you to participate in this year’s event, which will be organized in accordance with the instructions and recommendations of the administrative authorities of both the state and the Church, and in full compliance with the regulations issued due to the pandemic.

  1. On Sunday, August 9, the Holy Mass will be celebrated in Our Lady of Częstochowa Shrine at the following times: 10.00 AM, 12.00 noon, and 2.OO PM. We cordially invite you to come to the shrine on that day to mark your participation in the pilgrimage and to attend the Mass. In each case, the pilgrims will be warmly greeted before the celebration of the Eucharist and will have an opportunity to participate in the prayer before the image of Our Lady of Jasna Góra, as well as in the common singing and in other forms of prayer.
  2. Due to the limit of the participants, you need to obtain a free entrance card before attending the Holy Mass in the shrine. Should the number of persons willing to participate exceed the admissible limit, we are ready to celebrate the Mass also at other times during the day so that all those who have taken part in the annual pilgrimage to Our Lady of Częstochowa Shrine in Merrillville in the previous years can have a chance to mark their participation also in this year’s special event.
  3. Entry cards may be obtained in Merrillville on Sunday, July 26 and August 2. They will also be available in the Catholic Bookshop “Źródło” at 5517 W Belmont Ave, Chicago, and in St. Albert the Great Church at 800 S Linder Ave, Burbank, as well as in Merrillville, throughout the week preceding the 33rd pilgrimage (August 3–8).
  4. Entry cards will include information on the rules of participation in the Holy Mass in Merrillville, as well as tips regarding your arrival in and departure from the shrine.
  5. On entering the shrine you will be able to get your pilgrim’s badge, a special item for your collection, marking your pilgrimage to Our Lady of Częstochowa in the time of a global pandemic.
  6. We also invite you to virtually participate in the pilgrimage at 8:00 AM on Saturday, August 8, and at 8:00 AM on Sunday, August 9. You will be able to follow the actual walking pilgrimage of two Salvatorian Fathers and two lay persons along the traditional path; they will pray the prayers we have said annually during our walking pilgrimage (e.g. The Rosary, The Chaplet of the Divine Mercy, and the Way of the Cross), deliver conferences, and sing traditional religious songs. Their pilgrimage will begin and conclude with the Holy Mass, which you will be streamed live on the Internet.

All the pilgrims are cordially invited to participate in the common prayer during the Holy Mass celebrated in Our Lady of Częstochowa Shrine in Merrillville, as well as in the virtual prayer before your arrival to attend the Holy Mass in Merrillville and after your arrival home, so that we can stay spiritually connected.

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