Once again, this summer the Home of the Mother organized a pilgrimage and summer camp in Ireland, the land of St. Patrick. We left Roscommon on July 17th, 5 Servant sisters and about 10 Irish girls. We headed to the Dublin airport to pick up the rest of the group, those coming from Spain and America other girls from Ireland. This year our pilgrimage/summer camp showed the universality of the church, because we had girls attending from 5 different nationalities. There were girls from Spain, Ireland, India, Singapore and the United States.
The first thing we did was to put the pilgrimage under the protection of the recently beatified John O’ Sullivan by visiting his tomb in the centre of Dublin. He was a Jesuit Priest and a native of Northern Ireland, beatified in May of this year.
The second day we went up to Northern Ireland. The first stop was in Antrim on the most northern point of Ireland where there are enormous cliffs. The Lord granted us a clear, sunny day and the views were great. We could even see Scotland far out on the horizon. We crossed the “Carrick-a-Rede”, a rope bridge that goes from the cliffs to a little island. On the island we prayed the rosary while looking at the view.
We stayed two days in Derry where we visited Sr. Clare’s tomb. They asked for many graces. Some of them had known Sr. Clare when they were younger and other had never met her, but for a lot of the girls it was a very important moment.
On July 20th, we left Derry early to go to the sanctuary of Our lady of Knock. We spent the day there with Our Lady and had Mass in the apparition chapel. That same evening we headed for Waterford and arrived in the “Holy Family Mission” ready to start the summer camp.
The next day more Irish girls came. The house had a lot of space outside to play and a river right beside it. We spent a week there with a lot of activities: Mass, prayer, games, crafts, formation talks, hikes, etc... One day we went on a trip to the beach. The braver ones faced the cold and went for a swim and the others started to catch hermit crabs on the shore.
They were days full of graces for all of us. The formation meetings were a great help. We had difficult moments also when we had to overcome ourselves in many things, but even these moments helped us to realize that we were not at the summer camp just to receive and have a good time, but to also make an effort to grow as a person and to grow in virtue. Many girls learned that there is more joy in giving then receiving.
Our Blessed Mother wanted to give us many graces in this summer camp and we are very grateful to her for always showing us her motherly love. We hope that we have responded well to everything that She has given us and that we may always be worthy of her trust.