I would highly recommend this pilgrimage and place it as the most rewarding experience
By Max Kavanagh, Rhetoric Loyola
Lourdes was an amazing experience. It was one of the best weeks of my life and I will definitely be going back next year. Nine rhetoric students and I travelled with the oblate pilgrimage last September. We flew into Bordeaux uncertain of what we would face in the coming days but for me it only made the Pilgrimage that much more exciting. We got a bus down to Lourdes from Bordeaux and stayed in a quaint hotel a few minutes’ walk from the hospital where the guests stayed.
We were trained in the proper way to assist the guests as their wellbeing and enjoyment is by far the most important part of Lourdes. I’ll never really be able to replicate that feeling I got when the guests arrived at the hospital after a long journey. We helped them off the buses and guided them to their rooms, they were full of chat and smiling faces, all my nerves went out the window. I learnt that it is the simple things that make a difference.
The week was tiring, a full night sleep unheard of and the emotions were flowing but I wouldn’t have traded that week for anything in the world. I have from the trip made new friends for life and I feel part of a new community now. Lourdes, in unseen ways, I feel helped me grow as a person and really helps bring out the best in everyone no matter what job they had big or small. Lourdes helped me understand the value of what I have and how to appreciate others for what they are because everyone has a story and it deserves to be heard. I would highly recommend this pilgrimage and place it as the most rewarding experience I’ve had in Belvedere. I cannot wait for Oblates Lourdes 2019. Special thanks to Ms. Culligan and Mr. Altman for organising.