This was to be the 29th time I walked the Paris-to-Chartres Pentecost Pilgrimage. In modern times, only two events interrupted this pilgrimage—World War II and the Second Vatican Council. At this point, it looks like we may be facing the prospect of a third interruption—the Coronavirus pandemic.
I have not given up yet, however. I believe that what our sad and desperate world needs now more than ever is the abundance of grace made available each year on the Chartres Pilgrimage.
I would be lying, however, if I said I’m not concerned. With the Coronavirus now shutting down nearly everything—including Masses, churches, even Holy Week—it’s difficult to see how the international recovery effort could take place in time for this year’s Pilgrimage.
Still, one never knows, and, with God, anything is possible.
So, if you’re willing to wait a little longer I’d like to keep monitoring the situation, along with our French allies, to see if anything changes here in the next few weeks.
France, like everywhere else, is in lockdown right now. So, there’s no great urgency for me to pay for the hotels and restaurants needed for our pilgrimage. In other words, if this crisis continues into April we’ll be able to either refund all or most of your deposit or hang onto it in order to register you for next year.
We’ll post updates on our website: ChartresPilgrimageUSA.com and continue to provide major updates to you via email.
Feel free to telephone us anytime, and please rest assured that we will certainly not go to France unless and until the US State Department gives the all clear. As far as I can see, you have nothing to lose by waiting with me for that to happen. And, if it does not happen, we’ll start planning for next year.
Thanks for your patience. I hope you’re all healthy and safe. May God bless you and may Notre Dame de Chrétiente be with us all during this dark and confusing time.
In Christo Rege,
Michael J. Matt