† All Airport Taxes and Fuel Surcharges † Accommodations at Centrally located First Class Hotels: (or similar)
~ 4 nights: Hotel Ponte Sisto, Rome † Transfers as per itinerary † Breakfast and Dinner daily † Wine with dinners † Transportation by air-conditioned motor coach † Assistance of a professional local guide Throughout † Sightseeing and admissions fees as per itinerary † Catholic Priest available for Spiritual Direction † Mass daily & Spiritual activities † Luggage handling (1 piece per person)† Flight bag & portfolio of all travel documents
Why Divine Mercy Sunday? Divine Mercy Sunday was a special day for Blessed John Paul II, who established the feast day in 2001. Celebrated on the second Sunday of Easter, origins date back to Polish nun St. Faustina Kowalska, who had a devotion to the Divine Mercy after an encounter with Jesus.
In visions and conversations with Jesus, St. Faustina (1905-1938) said that he asked her specifically for a feast of Divine Mercy to be established so mankind would take refuge in Jesus. John Paul II died on the eve of Divine Mercy Sunday in 2005.
The theme of mercy is also central to the pontificate of Pope Francis, who has said, “This is the time for mercy.” Father Lombardi told Vatican Radio July 30 that Pope Francis has “great effectiveness in helping people understand the theme of God's love and mercy, which reaches out to soothe and heal the wounds of humanity.”
Following Pope Francis statement date of canonization has been publicized in media, however the consistory is held precisely in order to establish and announce the date publicly which is expected on September 30th.
Regarding Canonization of Bl. Pope John XXIII
Pope Francis signed a decree July 5 that gave the go-ahead for the canonizations of both Popes John Paul II and John XXIII. Although Blessed Pope John XXIII, who led the Church from 1958 to 1963 and convened the Second Vatican Council, was also expected to be canonized on the same date we have recently heard that his canonization may take place on another day, separate from Bl. John Paul II. We will keep you posted.
Sample Day-by-Day Itinerary:
Day 1, April 24: Depart New York - Italy
Depart for your overnight flights to Rome. Dinner and breakfast will be served on board.
Day 2, April 25: Arrival in Rome
Upon arrival in Rome Airport you will find your luggage and exit the baggage claim into the arrivals hall where you will be greeted by your tour escort and/or driver. After a warm welcome to Italy, you will be escorted to your transportation to your hotel. Enjoy a free afternoon for rest, relaxation, or exploration. Your tour escort can suggest sights or walks for you to enjoy. Tonight we will enjoy a delicious Italian dinner!
Day 3, April 26: Full Day of touring Christian Rome
Following breakfast, we will depart for a sightseeing tour entitled "Christian Rome" which includes: the Basilica of St. Mary Major, the most important and the oldest church dedicated to Our Lady. St. Mary Major contains a relic from the manger of the infant Jesus. Next, the Basilica of St. John the Lateran, the Pope’s cathedral church where relics of both Peter and Paul remain under the main altar. It was here that Pope Francis was formally installed one year ago as Bishop of Rome. Next we cross the street to see the Holy Staircase which is believed to be a staircase from Pilate’s palace in Jerusalem and brought to Rome by St. Helen in the 4th century. Time permitting we may climb the steps on our knees in memory of Christ’s Passion. Stop for lunch, and then we will continue on to visit St Paul. Outside the Walls, here we celebrate Mass. Continue our tour via the Appian Way -- the oldest road from Roman times--plus the famous Domino Quo Vadis Chapel; see the ancient Baths of Caracalla, Arch of Drusus; Tomb of Celilia Metella, and the catacombs of St Callixtus where the early Christians hid themselves to escape persecution. We will conclude the day by visiting the famous, Trevi Fountain. Built in the 15th Century to mark the ending destination of the Aqua Virgo (a manmade channel erected in 19 B.C. to bring fresh water to Roman bathhouses.) The water comes from the Salone Springs, eight miles outside of the city. Legend has it, by tossing a coin into the fountain, it will guarantee a return trip to Rome. Dinner and overnight.
Day 4, April 27: St. Peter’s Square Canonization Ceremony of Blessed John Paul II & John XIII It is with great joy and anticipation that we head over to Saint Peter’s Square this Divine Mercy Sunday morning for the Canonization of John Paul II & John XIII You will be transferred to Vatican City to attend Holy Mass and the Canonization Ceremony celebrated by his Holiness Pope Francis. According to hotel location, transfer may not be required. Your tour escort will oversee arrangements. (Vatican Museum Tour following Canonization – Pending Hours of Operation). Dinner and overnight in Rome.
Day 5, April 28: St. Peter’s Square – Mass of Thanksgiving
Transfer to St Peter’s Square for the Celebratory Mass. Balance of day at leisure. Your tour escort will oversee arrangements. Dinner and overnight in Rome.
Day 6, April 29: Depart Rome – New York
After breakfast, bid farewell to Rome with memories that will last a lifetime. We will be transferred to Rome Airport for our flights home.
Single Supplement / Private Room (limited, on request & availability basis)
Business Class Trans-Atlantic Upgrade (one-way)
(pending availability) $1,750
Business Class Trans-Atlantic Upgrade (round trip)
ABOUT CANONIZATION & ROME: On Friday, July 5th, Pope Francis signed the decree to Canonize the late Blessed John Paul II and John XXIII to become Saints! Rome has been one of history's most powerful and important cities, along with home to the Roman Catholic Church, the Pope, and the site of the Vatican City. First built in 337, St. Peter's Basilica lies over the tomb of St. Peter. Contained within is a vast array of the most beautiful artwork ever assembled, reflecting the immensity, beauty, vastness, majesty, glory and awesomeness of God.
Tomb of Blessed John Paul II, The Chapel of St. Sebastian, St. Peter's Basilica, Rome
Blessed John Paul II,
St. Peters Square,