Fr. Patrick Rutledge hails from Atlanta, Georgia. Before going to the seminary, he attended Georgia Tech and St. Mary’s College. Since his ordination by Bishop Tissier de Mallerais in 2009, he has served as a parish priest, District Bursar, and Principal of the St. Mary’s Academy Boys’ School. Since 2016, he has been Rector of St. Mary’s Academy and College in St. Mary’s, Kansas.
Fr. Rutledge accompanied the first five Youth Pilgrimages and is looking forward to traveling to the Holy Land.
** Youth pilgrims must be between 18 and 35 years of age, and provide a letter of recommendation from an SSPX priest. **
Day 1. Monday, June 15: Transatlantic flight to Tel Aviv
Day 2. Tuesday, June 16: Tel Aviv – Nazareth
Upon arrival in Tel Aviv, transfer via private motor-coach to Nazareth for dinner and overnight. (D)
Day 3. Wednesday, June 17: Walk from Nazareth to Cana (9 miles)
Begin your three-day walk from Nazareth to Galilee, which Our Lord would have regularly walked. Pass through Tzippori, an important Roman administrative city at the time of Our Lord. See its ancient ruins and admire its unparalleled Byzantine mosaics. Next stop along your walk, is the village of Mash’had for a view of Mt. Tabor. Continue to Cana, where Our Lord performed His first miracle by turning water into wine. Then, transfer by motor-coach back to Nazareth to visit the Basilica of the Annunciation and St. Joseph’s Shop, a small church built on the site of St. Joseph’s home and workshop. Dinner and overnight at your hotel in Nazareth. (BB, D)
Day 4. Thursday, June 18: Walk from Cana to the Horns of Hattin (13 miles)
Transfer to Cana to begin your walk to the Horns of Hattin, an extinct volcano with twin peaks overlooking the plains of Hattin in the Lower Galilee. It was here that a decisive Crusader battle took place in 1187 when Saladin’s forces defeated the Crusader army. On a clear day, the Horns provide a glorious view, including the Sea of Galilee framed by Arbel Cliffs and the snow-capped peak of Mt. Hermon to the northeast. At the end of today’s walk, transfer back to Nazareth via motor-coach for dinner and overnight at your hotel. (BB, D)
Day 5. Friday, June 19: Walk from Hattin to Magdala (12 miles)
Transfer to Hattin to begin your walk to Magdala. Standing 700 feet above the Sea of Galilee, the Cliffs of Arbel provide a beautiful panoramic view stretching from the Golan Heights to the Jordan River valley. Descending the cliff side, one can see 17th-century cliff dwellings built by the Druze and possible earlier Jewish dwellings, as well as the modern town of Wadi Hamam at the base of the cliffs. Also on the trail down, explore ancient caves from the Maccabean Revolt (167 to 160 BC). Continue to the Valley of the Doves, the route Our Lord would have taken from Nazareth to the Sea of Galilee. Finish your three-day walk by reaching Magdala, the hometown of St. Mary Magdalene. Here, see the ruins of a synagogue from the time of Our Lord. Transfer via motor-coach to your religious guesthouse at the Mount of Beatitudes. (BB, D)
Day 6. Saturday, June 20: Tiberias
Begin the day with a visit to the Church of the Multiplication of the Loaves and the Fishes to commemorate the miracle. Continue to the Church of the Primacy of St. Peter, where Our Lord appeared to the Apostles after His Resurrection. Next in Capharnaum, visit the church built over the ruins of St. Peter’s house and the synagogue where Our Lord used to preach. For lunch, sample the famous St. Peter’s Fish at a local restaurant. Afterwards, enjoy a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, where Our Lord Jesus Christ did much of His preaching and many of His Apostles were fishermen. See the Ancient Galilee Boat, an ancient fishing boat from the 1st century AD, discovered in 1986 on the northwest shore of the Sea of Galilee and now exhibited in the Yigal Allon Museum. The remains of the boat first appeared during a drought, when the waters of the Sea receded. Finally, end the day with a visit to the Mount of Beatitudes, the scene of Our Lord’s great Sermon on the Mount. Dinner and overnight at the Mount of Beatitudes. (BB, L, D)
Day 7. Sunday, June 21: Tiberias – Tabor – Shepherds’ Field – Bethlehem – Jerusalem
Today visit the Church of the Transfiguration in Mount Tabor and from here enjoy views of Jezreel Valley and the Plain of Esdraelon. Continue to visit Shepherds’ Field, where the angels appeared to the shepherds on the first Christmas night. Before reaching Jerusalem, travel to Bethlehem and visit the Church of the Nativity, built on the site where Our Lord was born. Connected to the Church of the Nativity, visit St. Catherine’s Church; descend to the grottoes of the Holy Innocents, St. Joseph and St. Jerome. Inside, visit St. Jerome’s Chapel, where the saint wrote the Vulgate. Nearby, see the Milk Grotto where Tradition says the Holy Family found refuge during the massacre of the Holy Innocents, before they could flee to Egypt. The name is derived from a “drop of milk” of the Blessed Virgin Mary falling on the floor of the cave and changing its color to white. Arrive in Jerusalem for dinner and overnight. (BB, D)
Day 8. Monday, June 22: Jerusalem. Excursion to St. George Monastery, Jericho, Baptismal Site, Dead Sea
Journey to Wadi Qelt valley and walk a path to visit the Monastery of St. George, where one can admire a 6th-century mosaic floor map of the Holy Land, which includes Israel, Palestine, and Southern Egypt. Continue to Jericho and take a cable car to the top of Mount of Temptation, where Our Lord was tempted by the devil after His 40 days in the Judean Desert. Continue to visit the traditional site of Our Lord’s baptism at the Jordan River. On your return to Jerusalem, enjoy an opportunity to go in the Dead Sea. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem. (BB, D)
Day 9. Tuesday, June 23: Jerusalem. Temple Mount & Ein Karem
Start this morning in Jerusalem with a visit to the Temple Mount, traditionally the Temple of Solomon, and since 691 AD an Islamic site. Then, visit the Church of St. Anne, erected over the traditional site of the birthplace of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Continue to the Pool of Bethsaida excavations, identified as the scene of the healing of the paralytic. Then, visit the Flagellation Church that enshrines the spot where Our Lord was flogged. Next is the Ecce Homo Church that commemorates the place where Pontius Pilate presented Our Lord to the hostile Jewish crowd. Afterwards, journey to Ein Karem, to visit the Church of St. John the Baptist, built over the Grotto of the Nativity of St. John, and the Church of the Visitation that commemorates the Blessed Virgin Mary’s visit to her cousin St. Elizabeth. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem. (BB, D)
Day 10. Wednesday, June 24: Jerusalem. Bethany, Mount Zion sites & Mount of Olives sites
Your first stop this morning is in Bethany, the town where Our Lord raised Lazarus from the dead. Visit the Church of St. Lazarus and Lazarus’ Tomb. In Mount Zion, see the Last Supper Room, where Our Lord shared the Last Supper with His Apostles. Afterwards, visit the Church of the Dormition, where tradition says that the Mother of God was laid in the tomb before her body was assumed into heaven; the Church of St. Peter in Gallicanctu, where St. Peter denied Our Lord; and the Palace of Caiaphas, where Our Lord was imprisoned. Then, to Mount of Olives for a beautiful panoramic view of Jerusalem. Visit the Chapel of the Ascension and the Church of Pater Noster, where Our Lord taught His disciples how to pray. On to the Church of Dominus Flevit, where Our Lord wept over the city of Jerusalem, and the Church of All Nations, officially named the Basilica of the Agony, built over the rock on which Our Lord prayed the night before He was crucified. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem. (BB, D)
Day 11. Thursday, June 25: Jerusalem – Emmaus – Jerusalem
Early this morning, carry the cross and follow the Via Dolorosa, the Way of the Cross, and end with the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Then, have an in-depth tour of this church, including a visit to the tomb of our forefather Adam and the tombs of Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea, as well as a tour of the Holy Sepulcher chapels. Afterwards, enjoy free time before transferring this afternoon to Emmaus, to visit the Church of the Apparition of Our Lord to two of His disciples after His Resurrection, Cleopas and Simeon. Return to Jerusalem for a farewell dinner and overnight. (BB, FD)
Day 12. Friday, June 26: Arrival in the USA
Early transfer to Tel Aviv airport for your flight back to the USA.
(BB) Buffet breakfast; (L) Lunch; (D) Dinner; (FD) Farewell dinner
* In case of unforeseen events, this itinerary is subject to change.
For more information or to register for this trip, please contact Regina Pilgrimages.