As a spiritually fruitful way to celebrate the Year of St. Joseph, we encourage the faithful to make a pilgrimage to the many parishes and chapels named for St. Joseph across the Archdiocese of Washington DC .
Click HERE for a list of parishes around the Archdiocese named after St. Joseph
WHAT IS A PILGRIMAGE?
A pilgrimage is no ordinary journey. It’s a kind of “holy traveling” undertaken with resolve for a particular spiritual purpose. Throughout Church history the faithful have traveled to holy sites—whether it’s a place where a saint lived, where a miracle occurred, or where a saint is especially honored—to obtain a special favor and to do penance for one’s sins.
When a church is named for a saint, it means that particular saint is its special heavenly guardian and intercessor. When you travel to parishes named for St. Joseph and leave your prayer intentions at his altars, it shows him special honor and will increase the blessings and graces you’ll receive through his intercession.
HOW TO HAVE A FRUITFUL PILGRIMAGE
To have a fruitful pilgrimage, simply carry a special prayer intention in your mind and heart. You can have a single intention, or a different one for each destination. Upon arrival kneel near St. Joseph’s altar or statue and pray fervently, asking him to intercede with Jesus Christ for your request. Conclude by offering prayers of gratitude and thanksgiving.
HOW TO GAIN INDULGENCES FOR THE YEAR OF ST. JOSEPH
Holy Mother Church offers us many opportunities to do penance for our sins. In addition to encouraging us to make a holy pilgrimage, another opportunity is by granting indulgences to the faithful. Indulgences are specific devotional acts delineated by the Holy See that, when faithfully performed, have the power to remit the temporal punishment for our own sins or for the sins of our departed loved ones. The Holy See has given us many ways to gain indulgences during the Year of St. Joseph. Read about them here.