Photos: Marian Route of National Eucharistic Congress comes to St. Cloud Diocese

The Diocese of St. Cloud is hosting the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage May 22-24. The pilgrimage is a portion of a national event where four groups of pilgrims will travel, mostly by foot, from routes beginning in the north, south, east and west of the country, converging in the city of Indianapolis ahead of the National Eucharistic Congress, slated for July 17-21. The procession in the Diocese of St. Cloud is part of the Marian Route, which began on May 17 at the Star of the North Eucharistic Congress in Bemidji and will pass through Minnesota, Wisconsin and Illinois before meeting the other routes in Indianapolis.

To kick off the events in our diocese, the perpetual pilgrims traveling the whole Marian Route gathered with Catholics from all over the diocese and beyond at the JC Baseball Fields in Mora for a procession to St. Mary Church. They then traveled by van to Gilman for a short procession and overnight Adoration and Confessions at Sts. Peter and Paul Church.

Day 2 of the  saw the pilgrims visiting Our Lady of Lourdes and St. Mary’s in Little Falls, St. Mary of Mount Carmel in Long Prairie, Our Lady of Angels and St. Paul’s in Sauk Centre and finally St. Mary’s Cathedral in St. Cloud.

On the pilgrims’ last day in the diocese, a walking procession will leave mid-morning form  St. Mary’s Cathedral and process to St. Marcus in Clear Lake. The 13-mile procession will occur over a 10-hour period of time on a route with water stations, porta-potties and designated bus stops for participants to return back to St. Cloud.

  • A woman scatters rose pedals on the sidewalk outside Our Lady of Lourdes in Little Falls.
  • The procession from Our Lady of Lourdes to St. Mary in Little Falls passes over the Mississippi River.
  • Father Omar Guanchez carries the monstrance in Long Prairie.
  • Ringing the bells at St. Mary of Mount Carmel in Long Prairie.
  • Father Greg Paffel carries the monstrance from Our Lady of Angels to St. Paul in Sauk Centre.
  • Bishop Patrick Neary holds the monstrance before the procession in St. Cloud.
  • A law enforcement officer directs the procession across Broadway in Little Falls.
  • Students from Mary of Lourdes School process prayerfully into the church.


  • Adoration at St. Mary of Mount Carmel.
  • Flags and bells were handed out for the procession around the block in front of St. Mary's Cathedral in St. Cloud.
  • The procession in Gilman.
  • Brother Damien Joseph Novak, a member of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal provides music during a procession to St. Mary Church in Mora.
  • Benedictine Father Jeremy Heppler is one of the pilgrims traveling the entire Marian Route.
  • Father Matthew Langager carries the monstrance during the procession around the block in front of Sts. Peter & Paul Church in Gilman.
  • After the procession in Gilman.
  • The procession in Mora.
  • Participants pray at one of the stops along the procession route in Mora.
  • Father Timothy Gapinski reads the prayers at one of the stops along the procession route in Mora.
  • Benediction at St. Mary in Mora. 



Author: Dianne Towalski

Dianne Towalski is a multimedia reporter for The Central Minnesota Catholic Magazine.

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