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R.E Coursework Pilgrimage

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Kevin Smith Pg.1 R.E Coursework Pilgrimage A pilgrimage is a journey to a sacred place as an act of religious devotion or as an act of respect (Pilgrimage means the journey of a pilgrim and a pilgrim is someone who goes on journeys to sacred places). Pilgrimages may be defined as journeys made to some place with the purpose of venerating it, or in order to ask there for supernatural aid, or to discharge some religious obligation. It is not essential for a Christian to go on a pilgrimage, unlike the religion of Islam where all Muslims have to go on a pilgrimage to Mecca, their Holy City, once in their life time. Only if they can find someone to go in their place they are excused of this spiritual journey, many Christians regard it as a very important step in their spiritual development. There are many reasons why Christians go on pilgrimages such as some Christians go on pilgrimages to increase and strengthen their faith, others go as an act of penance for their sins or an act of thanksgiving to God, Also to visit a holy place where God seems especially present, for physical healing, for spiritual healing, Also to visit the places connected with life, death and the resurrection of Jesus, to have a holiday in spiritual surroundings. ...read more.


The apparition appeared to the girl, Bernadette Soubirous, and she was seen on more occasions and eventually revealed her identity as the Virgin Mary. She told Bernadette that people would be healed if they visited the spring of water which appeared miraculously out of the ground. The visions were declared authentic by the Roman Catholic Church. At the time of her visions a spring appeared in a cave and this is now a grotto where pilgrims can bathe in the waters. Pilgrims gather in the grotto at Lourdes. Many Christians journey to Lourdes in search of healing. As a result of Bernadette's visions and subsequent claims of healing, Lourdes has become a major centre for people seeking to be healed. Hundreds of thousands of people go on a pilgrimage there every year. Each evening during the pilgrimage session there is a huge candle-lit session though the town. Prayers, hymns and finally a Communion service are relayed over a loudspeaker so that everyone can join in as they march around the town. Those who can't walk are pushed though the streets in wheelchairs by volunteer helpers. ...read more.


I will use one example why people would go on pilgrimages one is recently the tragic destruction of the Twin Towers in New York, America. People who had family and friends in the buildings or on the planes at the time might feel the need to go to a spiritual place and ask God for help or to pray for their lost ones. In today's society people would go on pilgrimages because of devotion to a saint, curiosity, to seek healing or ask for favours, to give thanks for favours received, as a form of penance of a sin, in the hope of earning eternal life, to deepen there faith and for companionship. Kevin Smith Pg.4 I think its up to each individual if they wish to go on pilgrimages but were as in Israel were you need to at least go on one pilgrimage in your life, they don't have the right to unless they are unwell and can get someone to go on there pilgrimage for them. So some religions demands that their people have to go on pilgrimages, but some people don't have to this is why I think it should be up to individual. ...read more.

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