Chance to join East Anglia pilgrimage to Lourdes

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Chance to join East Anglia pilgrimage to Lourdes

Each year in August the Diocese of East Anglia joins with the Catholic Association on a pilgrimage to Lourdes.  In 2024 it is from August 23 to 30 and bookings are now open at operator Tangney Tours.

The Pilgrimage provides a unique opportunity to gather in Lourdes, to pray and journey together in faith. It is a time to stand apart from the rigours of life and seek the peace, healing, and grace which a pilgrimage experience can afford.

Pilgrims come from all parts of the UK and beyond. In Lourdes we encounter pilgrims from all over the world.

The East Anglian Pilgrims are being advised to stay at the Hotel Eliseo. 

The following are included in the price

  • Return air fares – to Lourdes
  • 1 checked baggage weighing 20kg and 1 piece of hand luggage – final details will be provided 2 weeks prior to departure.
  • 7 days in Lourdes
  • Hotel transfers
  • Full pilgrimage programme

Financial assistance may be available (see below).

More details here:

Assisted Pilgrims.

Our assisted pilgrims can choose to stay in either a hotel with some basic support given by volunteer helpers (such as wheelchair assistance in getting around town or to services), or in the Accueil Marie St Frai, where medical and personal care is provided. Our assisted pilgrims are very much at the heart of our pilgrimage, and we welcome anyone interested in coming to this beautiful place in the picturesque Pyrenees.  In addition, financial help may be available through your Diocesan/Group Director.

The CA Pilgrimage also includes the Glanfield Children’s Group. Since 1987 the group has travelled to Lourdes with many children with learning difficulties, as well as chronic and terminal illness each year. Full details of the work they do can be found on our website.

Helpers wanted!

Almost every major pilgrimage to Lourdes has a Hospitalité organisation of some sort and most – like the Catholic Association – consists of the following types of volunteer helpers:

  • Nurses
  • Doctors
  • Chaplains
  • Health-care professionals (physiotherapists etc.)
  • Handmaids (female non-medical helpers)
  • Brancardiers, or ‘Brancs’ (male non-medical helpers)

Men and women of all ages and backgrounds come to Lourdes as volunteer-helpers to answer Mary’s request for people to ‘come in procession’, but more importantly they come in response to the command of her son Jesus to love God and to love our neighbours as ourselves (Gospel of Mark 12:29-31). These volunteer-helpers, who are pilgrims themselves, strive to encounter Jesus in each pilgrim, caring for their physical, emotional and spiritual well-being.

The minimum age for helping is 17 and there is no maximum age. If you are aged 17-25, you can be a part of the Young Helpers’ Group (a supervised group staying in a separate hotel).

For those helpers with children, the CA offers the Helpers Children’s Programme (HCP). The HCP offers a range of activities for the children of our volunteer helpers.  Many of our volunteer helpers who are parents find that this gives them the flexibility they need during the week to work with our assisted pilgrims.

Find out more by following this link:

Financial Assistance:

For pilgrims who might otherwise find the cost too high, the trustees of the Catholic Association have again agreed to fund part of the cost of the pilgrimage from charitable funds.

To that end, 80 places booked through Tangney Tours are available at a fixed price of £500 for assisted pilgrims, helpers, nurses and others.

Pilgrims from East Anglia may also contact Dcn Huw Williams (Diocesan Director for East Anglia) for further information and financial assistance:


mobile: 07399 163 718 (please leave a message).