More than 10,000 grandmothers and grandfathers from all over Ireland are expected to converge on Knock Shrine on Sunday next for the largest pilgrimage of its type in the world — and 13 year-old Ireland’s Got Talent winner Chloe Coyle will perform with her mentor Dana as part of the celebration.
In just four years, the National Grandparents Pilgrimage has become one of the largest religious gatherings in Ireland. This year’s event will take place at 3pm, preceded by anointing of the sick at 2.30pm.
Michael English, a Kildare singer who has a huge following around Ireland, will also sing for what is expected to be a packed Basilica at Knock Shrine.
“Grandparents are travelling from all over Ireland to pray together for peace and harmony in our world, and also to pray for the happiness and contentment of their children and grandchildren,” said Catherine Wiley, founder of the pilgrimage in 2007.
“This is the largest grandparents’ pilgrimage in the world. This pilgrimage has been the catalyst for grandparents’ pilgrimages in America, Tanzania, Germany, Australia, and Argentina. We have also founded a number of Catholic Grandparents Association branches in various parts of the country.”
A nationwide prayer appeal for grandparents has been launched as part of the build-up to the pilgrimage, and grandchildren from all over Ireland have responded by writing thousands of prayers for grandparents. These prayers will form part of this year’s pilgrimage Mass.
More details on the pilgrimage can be found on www.CatholicGrandparentsAssociation.com, or by telephoning the Catholic Grandparents Association on 098 24877.