June 11, 2024 // FEATURE

Minnesota Welcomes Our Lord as Marian Route Begins

Christ’s Peace! We are officially on the road for the Marian Route of the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage, and it’s safe to say that we hit the ground running full speed ahead with Our Lord. The first two weeks of this pilgrimage have flown by, but they have been full of so many grace-filled moments and encounters.

The pilgrimage kicked off with the Northern Eucharistic Congress and Pentecost Sunday Mass at Lake Itasca, Minnesota, where Bishop Andrew Cozzens of the Diocese of Crookston, Minnesota, brought Our Eucharistic Lord to the headwaters of the Mississippi and blessed them. After this grand day of procession, we then brought Jesus to the town of LaPorte, Minnesota, which has a population of only 300 people. It’s hard to put into words just how special it was to bring Jesus to this community, to see how nearly every person in the town was present to welcome Jesus, and just how much it meant that Our Lord would stop at their parish on this pilgrimage. Throughout this first week, we hit bigger cities in Minnesota such as Duluth and St. Cloud, but most processed in rural areas, bringing Jesus to small but vibrant towns.

These moments in small towns and churches brought me to better understand Our Lord’s profound humility and intentionality. In the scope of this whole pilgrimage, Jesus wanted to come and reach the unheralded in the Church, whose love and devotion is known only to Him, and to have them experience His love and delight in them through His Eucharistic presence. To watch the faces of all these people encounter Our Lord and experience His love are moments I will never forget.

During the second week of the pilgrimage, while in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, I saw Christ the King exalted by His people, only to then willingly lower Himself to those who thought He was out of reach. Our week in the Twin Cities began with the Source and Summit Eucharistic Procession, where more than 7,000 Catholics showed up to walk the four miles from the St. Paul Seminary to St. Paul’s Cathedral. To see thousands upon thousands of people walking with Jesus was such an inspiring scene. It is clear the Source and Summit Procession will be spoken about in the Twin Cities for years to come as a moment of profound faith and witness by the Catholic Church.

The next day, after this momentous procession, we brought Jesus to the elderly and sick at a Little Sisters of the Poor home. The same Jesus who has wanted to show His power and majesty through the previous day’s procession now wanted to lower Himself to those who could not be there, just to show them how much He loves them. In His perfect design of the pilgrimage, it was crucial to Our Lord that none of His beloved feel that He had forgotten them. His Sacred Heart loves each of us so profoundly that He will stop at nothing to come and encounter each of us, even when it seems impossible.

It is humbling and honoring to bring Jesus to the people of the Midwest, to see Him encounter them, and to rejoice with them in His glory. I cannot wait to see all Our Eucharistic Lord wants to do throughout this summer, and how our nation responds to His burning love.

As the Marian Route enters into this next week of pilgrimage, please pray for us and all those we will be encountering, and know of my prayers for you!

Ad Jesum Per Mariam,
Danielle Schmitz

* * *

The best news. Delivered to your inbox.

Subscribe to our mailing list today.