Tour Detail

12 Day Pilgrimage to Italy with Msgr. Steven Brovey

Itinerary

Day 1: February 26 Monday - CHARLESTON/ROME

Depart from Charleston for our fl ights to Rome. Dinner and breakfast served on board.

Day 2: February 27 Tuesday - ROME/GRECCIO/ASSISI

Upon our arrival in Rome we are greeted by our Regina Tour Escort, transfer to our deluxe motor coach for Assisi, fi rst stopping in Greccio an old hill town in the province of Rieti. As we approach the town we will see the piazza and the Sanctuary. In December 1223AD St. Francis started the tradition of the Nativity Scene in memory of the birth of Jesus. Mass will be celebrated here. We continue on to Assisi the hometown where gentle St Francis was born. We check into our hotel for dinner and overnight. (D)

Day 3: February 28 Wednesday - ASSISI

After breakfast we will explore this quaint hill top town with its cobble stone streets. It still retains the atmosphere of the early 13th century. Our fi rst stop is a visit to the Basilica of St Francis.After Mass we will tour the basilica which contains many of the saint's possessions and a series of frescoes depicting his life and ministry. We continue on to the Church of St Clare to see her incorrupt body and relics. St Clare was the foundress of the Order of the Poor Clares who followed the teachings of a life of poverty and humility set down by St. Francis. Our last stop will be to the Valley below to visit the Church of St Mary of the Angeles. It was here St Francis spent most of his life. We will visit the Chapel, Portiuncola, the rose bush and the cave where the saint retired for prayer. We return to the hilltop to stroll along the medieval cobble streets, shop or sit at one of the outdoor cafes with a view of the Roman Temple. Dinner and overnight (B/D)

Day 4: March 1 Thursday - ASSISI

After morning Mass at the Basillica of St. Claire, we half day tour to the top of Mount Subasio to visit the Eremo della Carceri (The Hermitage). St. Francis lived many years here alone in prayer and penance. As we stand at the Cave and look over the valley, we can see why St. Francis was called the Patron Saint of Nature and Servant of the Poor. The rest of the day is free time.(B/D)

Day 5: March 2 Friday - ASSISI /FLORENCE

After breakfast we bid farewell to Assisi and journey to Florence “The Renaissance City “, a paradise for art lovers. We will have a half day Orientation tour which includes a visit to the Academy which holds the famous statue of “David” by Michelangelo, celebrate Mass at Santa Croce. The balance of the day is at leisure to visit the Duomo, Baptistery Bronze Doors showing the Gate of Paradise, Santa Maria del Fiore and the Ponte Vecchio. Don't forget to get in some shopping for leather goods, jewelry and glassware. Overnight. (B)

Day 6: March 3 Saturday - FLORENCE/ OVIETO/ROME

We depart Florence and head to Ovieto, the city of one of the Eucharistic Miracles of the Body and Blood of Christ. As we enter the city and head for the present day Cathedral (corner stone laid in 1290AD) we will see the blood stained stones, the beautiful marble façade, the Piazza del Duomo amidst the dazzling spires, mosaics and sculptures. The Cathedral is dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin and the Miracle of The Corporal of Bolsena is persevered in the Cathedral. In 1263 when a consecrated host began to bleed onto the corporal, the small cloth upon which the host and chalice rest during the Cannon of the Mass. The appearance of the blood was seen as a miracle to affi rm the Roman Catholic doctrine of Transubstantiation, which states, the bread and wine become the Body and Blood of Christ at the moment of Consecration. This miracle lead to the Feast Day of Corpus Christi. Mass will be celebrated at the Cathedral. We will have time to walk around this lovely city, have lunch (which is on our own). Then proceed to Rome. Dinner and overnight. (B/D)

Day 7: March 4 Sunday - ROME

Today is a walking tour with Msgr. Brovey who has visited Rome many times. Dinner is on your own. (B)

Day 8: March 5 Monday - ROME

After breakfast we will have a guided tour of the Vatican Museums, We'll cover the Tapestry Gallery, The Raphael Rooms and the Sistine Chapel. After free time for lunch, we will visit the Holy Stairs according to the Christian tradition are the steps Jesus Christ stood on during his Passion on his way to trial. The stairs were, reputedly, brought to Rome by St. Helena in the 4th Century. For centuries, the Scala Santa has attracted Christian pilgrims who wished to honor the Passion of Jesus: next is the Basilica of St. John the Lateran which is the Cathedral of Rome and the offi cial ecclesiastical seat of the Bishop of Rome, who is the Pope. Our last stop of the day is to the Church of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem, absolutely breathtaking. It was supposedly founded in 320AD by Emperor Constantine to house the relics brought back by his mother Helen (St. Helena) from Jerusalem. The relics are three fragments from the True Cross, one nail used in the Crucifi xion and a small piece of the scourging pillar. It also contains a reliquary of two of the thorns in the Crown of Thorns. This church is an art lover's delight. Dinner is on our own. (B)

Day 9: March 6 Tuesday - ROME

Today we will visit the Basilica of St. Mary Major's where will celebrate morning Mass. Then Basilica of St. Clemente, it is not just another church in Rome, it is unique! Its magnifi cent frescoes and its twelfth-century mosaic of the Cross as the Tree of Life will engage your mind and heart: St. Cecilia in Trestevere, the fi rst church on this site was founded probably in the 3rd century. Tradition holds that the church was built over the house of the saint and her relics were moved from the catacombs of St. Calixtus to the church: St. Maria in Trestevere according to legend, on the day Christ was born a stream of pure oil fl owed from the earth on the site of the church, signifying the coming of the Grace of God. A column next to the altar marks the spot. This church was founded around the 3rd century and is the queen of churches dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The Church and Convent of Santa Sabina on the Aventine Hill, was built between 422 and 432 AD on the site of the matron Sabina. In 1216 the Order of Preachers now commonly known as the Dominicans was given this church as its headquarters. Balance of the day at leisure Dinner is on your own. (B)

Day 10: March 7 Wednesday - ROME

Today we will walk to St. Peter's for a Papal Audience (if available) where we gather with thousands of pilgrims from around the world to hear the Holy Father and receive a Papal Blessing. After the Papal Audience we will have the Scavi tour which will take us beneath St. Peter's Basilica to the tomb of the Prince of the Apostles. The rest of the day is free to explore Rome on your own. Dinner is on your own. (B)

Day 11: March 8 Thursday - ROME

After breakfast we will visit the Church of Gesu which is the main church of the Society of Jesus, known as the Jesuits, started by St. Ignatius of Loyola, The saint's body is buried in the church along with an arm of St. Francis Xavier: St. Paul's Outside the Walls one of the fi ve patriarchal basilicas, it is one of the seven traditional pilgrimage churches: drive along the Appian Way the oldest Roman road to the Catacombs. It is here Christians hid so they could worship without being put to death: Santa Maria Aracoeli Church dates back to 574AD when it was a Byzantine Monastery. From 9th – 13th century it belonged to the Benedictines and in 1299AD the Franciscans re-consecrated it. Santa Maria Aracoeli boasts Rome's best loved Christmas Ritual. Our last stop is Venice Square where the monument built from 1885-1911AD references the 1870AD unity of Italy. It is also the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Dinner is on your own. (B)

Day 12: March 9 Friday - ROME/CHARLESTON

After breakfast we depart for the airport taking with us memories, joy, and blessings to last us a life time. We arrive home the same day. (B)

*(B,L,D) = Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Inclusions

INCLUDED:
• Round-trip from Charleston via Atlanta (includes fuel surcharge)
• Breakfast daily and 3 dinners
• Sightseeing as per itinerary
• Airport-hotel transfers
• Hotel taxes & baggage handling
• Touring by Private Air Conditioned Motorcoach
• Services of a Professional Tour Escort

NOT INCLUDED:
• Gratuity
• Optional Insurance (recommended)
• Single Supplement - $650.00