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Special Pilgrimage to
Ancient Greece & Rome,

 

in the Footsteps of St. Paul
with The Clarion Herald & Fr. Gerald Seiler, St.

Edward the Confessor Church
April 17 - 27, 2018

including a Cruise to the Greek Islands of
Mykonos, Santorini, Patmos & Crete
and Ephesus to visit the Home of the Virgin Mary!

 

 

Proposed Itinerary

 

Tue, April 17 - Day 1 - Depart New Orleans

Today you will board your connecting flights to Athens, with breakfast and dinner served onboard the Transatlantic portion.


Wed, April 18 - Day 2 - Athens

Upon arrival in Athens you will be met by your guide and given a short panoramic tour of the city on the way to your hotel. You will see the House of Parliament on Syntagma Square, the University of Athens, the oldest higher education institute in Greece, as well as, the National Library of Greece that holds 4,500 Greek manuscripts. You will also visit the Panathenaic Stadium, a beautifully marbled multi-purpose stadium which is home to the Olympian Zeus, and is the site of the first modern era Olympics (1896). After checking into your hotel, you will have the opportunity to relax or take swim before gathering for dinner.

 

Thu, April 19 -Day 3 - Athens -The Acropolis and Ancient Corinth
After a nice breakfast at the hotel we will start with a tour of one of the oldest cities in the world, Athens! Visit the rock that has dominated the panorama of Athens for twenty-five centuries, the Acropolis. At the Acropolis, you will see the ruins of the Parthenon, Erectheum, and Propylae. After, you will ascend Mars Hill where St. Paul spoke to the Athenians about the one and only God (Acts 17:22). From here you will travel out to the ancient city of Corinth. Under the shadow of its own towering Acropolis, St Paul lived in Corinth for two years. Dismayed about the situation of the Gentile Church in Corinth at the time, he was inspired to write four letters, all with the overarching theme of love. In Corinth, you will have the opportunity to view the remains of the first century shops, the Fountain of Peirene, and the Temple of Apollo. You will also have the opportunity to stand on the Bema, the site of Saint Paul's trial by Gallio. Following your visit to Corinth, you will have an opportunity to see the impressive canal that cuts through the narrow Isthmus of Corinth and separates the Peloponnese from the Greek mainland. Return to Athens for a delicious dinner and Greek Music in the Plaka tonight!


Fri, April 20 - Day 4 - Athens - Start Cruise to Mykonos
Following breakfast, you will proceed to the Piraeus port where you will board your ship and sail the blue waters of the Aegean Sea. Your first stop this evening will be the Island of Mykonos, the most cosmopolitan of the Greek islands that attracts visitors from all over the world. You have time to walk the narrow cobbled streets of Hora, the charming port city. Pass by chic boutiques, elegant nightclubs, and white washed houses on your way to Alefkandra, the section of Mykonos known as "Little Venice.Ē Enjoy the sunset from the waterside cafť and take a peek inside one of over 300 churches and chapels that dot the island. Late dinner available aboard the ship.


Sat, April 21 - Day 5 - Cruise - Kusadasi - Ephesus (Mary's House) - Patmos

After breakfast on board, arrive at the lively Turkish port of Kusadasi and begin your included excursion to a small village on a hill above Ephesus, where you will visit the small stone chapel that is built on the site of where the Virgin Mary spent her last days after Christ's crucifixion. Then your group will walk through the Magnesian Gate into the ancient city Ephesus to begin your walking tour, which will take you through the most magnificent excavations in the world. Some of the sites include the Odeon (concert hall), the Fountain of Trajan, the heated Baths of Scolastika, the Temple of Hadrian and the Latrians, and the Library of Celsus. The last stop on the walking tour is to the Great Theatre, which had a capacity of 25,000 people and is the site of where Saint Paul preached to the Ephesians. You will have the opportunity to view the remains of the Basilica which was erected over the grave of St. John the Evangelist in the sixth century. Return to Kusadasi to re-board your ship and enjoy lunch as you sail to the nearby island of Patmos. Upon arrival you will tender into shore and travel up the hill to the village of Chora. Your included excursion will begin with a visit to the Monastery of Saint John the Theologian. This marvelous structure was built nine hundred years ago. In addition to the stunning main church that contains outstanding frescoes, you will have the opportunity to view the beautiful courtyard, dining room, and the bakery. Your tour continues to the small museum, where you will view priceless ecclesiastical treasures such as books, manuscripts, mosaics, icons, textiles, vestments, and jewelry. From here the bus will take you to the Monastery and Grotto of the Apocalypse. In this grotto, you will see where St. John was exiled and where the Voice of God created a 3 fold crack in the walls of the cave, emphasizing the Holy Trinity. It is here that John had his Divine visions that inspired him to write the Book of Revelations. The silver niches in the wall mark the pillow and ledge that he used as a desk. Transfer back to the port and tender back to your ship for dinner.

 

Sun, April 22 - Day 6 - Cruise - Heraklion - Santorini
After breakfast, begin your included excursion in the largest city on the island of Crete, Heraklion. You will visit the ancient ruins of the Palace of Knossos which were discovered in 1899 and now have been partially reconstructed. This ancient palace is believed to have been the mythical Labyrinth of King Minos and the seat of ancient Minoan culture. Additionally, it is the site of where Saint Paul met the owner and captain of the ship who warned him of continuing his journey to spread Christianity in Rome. Back onboard ship, you will sail to the most breathtaking island of all the Greek Islands, Santorini. Here you are free to take the Cable car or the Donkey to the top of the Caldera, where the city of Thira (Fira) is perched. You may choose to take in the magnificent views over the Aegean as you stroll past the iconic white-washed houses, open-air cafes, and glittering boutiques that cling to steep cliffs. The city itself, perches on the edge of the island volcano whose eruption 3,500 years ago is thought to have led to the collapse of the Minoan civilization. Return to your ship for your last dinner and overnight on your cruise.

 

Mon, April 23 - Day 7 - Athens - Rome
Following disembarkation from the ship, you will transfer to the Athens Airport where you will board your 2 hour flight to Rome. Upon arrival in Rome you will be met by your local guide transferred to the Basilica of St. Paulís Outside the Walls, one of Rome's four Major Basilicas for Mass. Originally built by the Emperor Constantine in the 4th Century, it stands over the place where St. Paul the Apostle was beheaded under Nero around 65-67 A.D. From here you will travel to the nearby catacombs of St. Callixtus where the early Christians hid themselves to celebrate the Eucharist and to escape persecution. Continue traveling along the Appian Way, the oldest road from Roman times, passing the famous Domino Quo Vadis Chapel, the ancient Baths of Caracalla, the Arch of Drusus and the Tomb of Celilia Metella on your way into Rome where you will check-in to your hotel. Dinner will be followed by a walk to St. Peterís Square for Rosary (Optional).

 

Tue, April 24 - Day 8 - Rome
Following breakfast, you will walk to St. Peter's Basilica, built on the site where St Peter was martyred. Here you will celebrate Mass in he crypt, followed by a visit through the grandest church in Christendom. You will see Michelangeloís Pieta and Berniniís Bronze Canopy, and you will have time pray at the tomb of St John Paul II! Afterward, you will visit the Vatican Museum, which contains hundreds of galleries filled with awe-inspiring relics and works of art donated throughout centuries as tributes of faith. You'll visit the Tapestry Gallery, the Raphael Rooms and the Sistine Chapel, where you can admire Michelangelo's restored masterpiece, the Last Judgment. Enjoy some free time this afternoon. Dinner at a local restaurant in Rome.

 

Wed, April 25 - Day 9 - Vatican City - Papal Audience - Major Basilicas
Today is truly a day which will live in your hearts for many years to come. Following breakfast, you will make your way back to St. Peterís Square to attend the Papal Audience, led by His Holiness, Pope Francis (pending the Popeís schedule.) During his audience, he will pray in many languages and bless all religious articles you have with you. Following the audience, you will make your way to the Trevi Fountain which was built in the 15th Century to mark the final destination of the Aqua Virgo Ė a man-made channel of water, erected in 19 B.C. After time for lunch you will visit the Basilica of St. John in Lateran, the Popeís cathedral church where relics of both Peter and Paul remain under the main altar. It was here that Pope Francis was formally installed as Bishop of Rome. Next you will cross the street to see the Scala Sancta, or the Holy Stairs, which are believed to be the actual steps leading up to the praetorium of Pontius Pilate in Jerusalem upon which Jesus Christ stepped on his way to trial during His Passion. They were brought to Rome by St. Helena, the mother of Constantine, in the 4th century. Time permitting you may climb the steps on your knees in memory of Christís Passion. Continue to the Basilica of St. Mary Major, the most important and the oldest church dedicated to the Virgin Mary, which also contains a relic from the Manger of the infant Jesus. Here you will visit the beautiful Borghese Chapel and celebrate Mass before heading to dinner. Overnight in Rome

 

Thu, April 26 - Day 10 - Rome
This morning you will enjoy a walking tour around historical Rome, which will begin at the Pantheon, which was first built by the Romans as a temple to all their pagan gods. Now a Catholic Church, when Michelangelo saw this wonder for the first time he said that it looks more like the work of angels, not humans. From here you will meander through the cobblestone streets to the Piazza Navona, where Berniniís masterpiece, la Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi, or the Fountain of the Four Rivers, is located. Once an ancient stadium, it is now Romeís liveliest square, full of tourists, artists, musicians, shops and restaurants. Here you will break for lunch, with the rest of the afternoon free to shop, explore or just sit at a sidewalk cafť and watch the world pass by. Mass this evening will be at hilltop church of Trinitŗ dei Monti, located at the top of the Spanish Steps with a view over looking Rome and the Vatican below. After Mass you will have a Special Farewell dinner in a local restaurant. Overnight in Rome.

 

Fri, April 27 - Day 11 - Return to USA
After breakfast you will board your motorcoach and transfer to the airport for your return flights to the USA.

 

Included Tour Features


* Flights from New Orleans to Athens with return from Rome
* Flight from Athens to Rome
* 9 Nights Accommodations in First Class Hotels and Cruise
2 nts Athens - Hotel Royal Olympic**** (or similar)
3 nts Celestyal Cruise Lines - Celestyal Crystal
4 nts Rome - StarHotel Michelangelo**** (or similar)
* Breakfast and Dinner daily, and Lunches while onboard ship
* Wine and Bottled Water with Dinners in Rome and Athens
* Unlimited drinks package while on cruise (not premium brands)
* Shore Excursions in Ephesus, Patmos, Crete
* Tours as outlined in itinerary, including Entrance Fees
* Professional English Speaking Tour Guides and Escorts
* All Tours and Transfers via Private Motorcoach
* Port Taxes and All Cruise Tips and Gratuities
* All Tips and Gratuities for Tour Guides and Bus Drivers
* Welcome Packets, Neck Wallets and Travel Backpacks
* Daily Mass & Spiritual Activities coordinated By Fr. Gerald Seiler

 

Don't Miss this Trip of a Lifetime!

Tour # AR18 0417-CH

Tour Prices are per person, based on Double Occupancy

and the type of Stateroom you choose for the cruise.

$5,795 pp - Inside Stateroom

$5,895 pp - Outside Stateroom with Porthole windows

$5,995 pp - Outside Stateroom with Picture windows

$6,695 pp - Balcony Suites (limited number available)

Prices available from other cities

Space is Limited and Registrations are accepted on a

"First Come, First Serve" basis. Register early to guarantee your place

onboard, and to secure your preferred stateroom category.

*Single Rooms available for an additional supplement

Optional Travel Insurance Available.

Click here to register on-line

 

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818-849-7729 / 504-834-4951

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