Providing a Catholic framework on the truth and meaning of sexuality, love, and family

Incredible Experience!

“One of the most incredible … experiences of our lives …”

Married couples on Family Honor’s Pilgrimage reaffirmed their wedding vows in a ceremony led by Fr. Gillespie in Cana.

“Thank you all, our Pilgrim Brothers and Sisters, for providing the environment and community for one of the most *incredible* and memorable experiences of our lives.”

“Many thanks to everyone for the pilgrimage of a lifetime for us.”

“What a blessed experience this pilgrimage was! It will take a lifetime to unpack all of the teachings, history and emotions of this trip.  Thanks again to Brenda and all who helped coordinate.” 

On January 23, 39 very tired but happy pilgrims returned from Family Honor’s nine-day Pilgrimage to Jordan and Israel. Led by Family Honor Chaplain, Rev. Phillip Gillespie, and Family Honor Executive Director, Brenda Cerkez, the group of adventuresome travelers had been to sites in the Holy Land that most had previously only read about in Scripture.

On this Pilgrimage, however, they got to see the view from Mount Nebo, where God allowed Moses to look out to the Promised Land. They hiked into the ancient city of Petra, Jordan, [photo at left] where some rode camels and everyone marveled at the history of the remarkable city.

Then, after crossing over the border into

Israel, the pilgrims were overwhelmed with emotion at each holy site that was visited.

Some of the other places where our pilgrims visited: Qumran, to see and hear about the Dead Sea Scrolls; Bethlehem, to see the Church of the Nativity and Shepherds’ Field; Ein Karem, the site of the birth of St. John the Baptist and the home where the Blessed Mother visited her cousin Elizabeth; Mt. Tabor, where the Transfiguration took place; Nazareth and the Basilica of the Annunciation and St. Joseph’s shop.

Pilgrims were blessed to have daily Mass at various holy sites, and the trip was greatly enhanced by Tour Escorts Jamil (in Jordan) and Rizeq (in the Holy Land). Their knowledge of history, people, places, and events was incredible!

Additional special thanks also go to: Fr. Gillespie, for his reverent Masses; Chet, for leading the Divine Mercy Novena; Roy, for his guidance on the technology to share photos; Michael, for being such a good ‘shepherd’ for the group; our pilgrimage company, for their expert planning; and ALL our pilgrims, for being such good-humored, flexible, and prayerful travelers!

Interested in possibly joining Family Honor on a future pilgrimage? Be the first to know our plans – contact us and ask to be put on our Pilgrimage Notification or 803.929.0858.

For more photos, visit Family Honor’s Facebook page:

Fr. Gillespie blesses pilgrims with water from the Jordan River.

Pilgrims prepare to enter the Church of the Holy Sepulcher.

Pilgrims praying reverently at the altar that marks the site where Jesus’ cross stood on Golgotha.

Church of the Transfiguration

Pilgrims on the Sea of Galilee