On Saturday morning, March 16, 2013 a number of Irish pilgrims walked the short distance from the Collège des Irlandais to Notre Dame de Paris. The pilgrims, from the Irish Chaplaincy Paris and visitors from Ireland, walked through the narrow streets of the fifth arrondissement in commemoration of all the Irish people who lived, studied and worked in France. It was especially poignant as there has been a centre of Irish presence in the Latin Quarter for more than 400 years.
The morning began at 9am with morning prayers in the Chapelle Saint-Patrick led by the Irish Chaplain Fr Sean Maher. The 15 pilgrims then walked along the historic streets via Rue Clotilde, Rue Valette, Rue des Carmes (with Notre Dame de Paris coming into view), and Rue Lagrange.
There were moments of prayerful reflections. The pilgrims stopped at Saint Etienne du Mont (which is the local parish church) to remember Irish people who lived in the area. Then on Rue des Carmes the pilgrims stopped outside the Saint Ephrem Church which used to be the chapel of the Collège des Lombards, the original Irish college in Paris before the current Collège des Irlandais. There the pilgrims prayed for the Irish people who are laying to rest in the crypt of the church.
After crossing Pont du Double onto Ile de France the pilgrims arrived at their destination. The pilgrims stopped at the name of St Patrick – one of the many saints written on the specially constructed structure for the 850th Jubilee of the cathedral. Led by Fr Sean, reading from prayers of St Patrick, the pilgrims completed the first two steps of the Pilgrim Way.
To view photos of the Irish Pilgrim Walk visit the Photo Gallery.
We would welcome your experiences and comments relating to our historic celebrations during the weekend of March 16 – 17, 2013. You can either write them on the form in Contact Us or you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org