Fatima Pilgrimage takes place again – 30 years after the first pilgrimage took place
After two years of lockdown due to the Covid pandemic, the annual Fatima pilgrimage walk hosted by Blessed Sacrament church in Malvern East, Ekurhuleni, will take place on Saturday, May 14 at 18:30. If previous years are an indicator, hundreds of Catholics will be taking to the Johannesburg streets again.
This year marks 30 years since the first pilgrimage walk took place in 1992, then with only about 50 young people from the parish youth group taking part.
The pilgrimage on foot celebrates the apparitions of the Mother of Jesus to three shepherd children in the hamlet of Fatima in Portugal. The first of six apparitions took place on May 13, 1917. During these apparitions, Mary under the title of Our Lady, Queen of the Rosary, appealed for prayer, conversion and peace in the world.
“Since these apparitions, millions of people have changed their lives positively and come to practise the messages of Fatima,” said Manny de Freitas, co-convenor of the pilgrimage. He explained that because these apparitions took place in Portugal, the Portuguese community has a special devotion to Our Lady of the Rosary of Fatima.
To mark these Marian apparitions, Malvern East church, led by parish priest Fr Andrew Knott OMI, will be undertaking a pilgrimage on foot. As a departure from previous years, the route this month will start and conclude at the church, which is situated at the corner of Geldenhuis and Mullins Roads in Malvern East, Bedfordview, Ekurhuleni.
“All are invited to join pilgrims on foot in this pilgrimage on May 14 when we are aiming at beating the last pilgrimage of an estimated pilgrimage attendance of 1500 pilgrims,” said de Freitas. Pilgrims are invited to join the pilgrimage wearing comfortable shoes and to bring a candle and a rosary.