Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Pillgrimage... Baltimore, Maryland

This article is the first in a series called “Pilgrimage…” which focus on a city or region and talks about Catholic landmarks that you could go see if you were to visit the city.  It is a kind of guide if you would ever want to do a pilgrimage to that city to see the Catholic churches, shrines which make up the history of that city or region.    

For our first stop in this series we are going to the city of Baltimore, Maryland.  Baltimore was named the first diocese in the United States in 1789.  With having a 200 year history, Baltimore has many catholic cultural treasures.  On our pilgrimage to Baltimore our first logical stop is the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary at 320 Cathedral Street.  

First Stop...

The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Baltimore is a co cathedral dioceses the basilica is the first cathedral in the United States.  In 2006 a major restoration project was completed to bring the basilica back to its original grandeur.  The basilica was restored the original clear windows that allows natural light to emit into the sanctuary making is a more invited worship space.   The basilica is open everyday for tourist to come visit the oldest basilica in the United States.

Second Stop...

St. Jude's Shrine
While we're are still in the area lets take a stroll to St Jude's Shrine.  It is walkable but St. Jude also has a parking lot in front of it of patrons of the shrine.  St. Jude patron saint of hopeless causes.  
St Jude Shrine is worth a trip to pray if you are in Baltimore

Third Stop...

St. Mary's Spiritual center and Historical Site
Our last official stop on the our tour is to the St Mary’s Spiritual Center and Historical site on Paca Street.  For many Catholics in Baltimore, the ones that go into the city to tour spiritual places St. Mary’s Spiritual center is the one they probably haven’t been.  But it is significant on a couple of fronts, first the original chapel of St Mary’s the first seminary in the United States and second the Mother Seton house where St. Elizabeth Ann Seton lived during her stay in Baltimore before leaving for Emmitsburg.  This location located in the heart of Baltimore with the two historical building and of course the gift shop is a great way to complete your Catholic pilgrimage to Baltimore.  

Optional Stops...
For more fun in Baltimore consider going to North Baltimore for some other though not a touristy(meaning you need to call ahead to arrange a tour, if available and no gift shops).  

Cathedral of Mary our Queen
Baltimore's other Cathedral, not as historic but much bigger.

St. Mary’s Seminary and University (No Public Tours)
 First and oldest seminary in the United States

Upcoming Cities in the future installments of  "Pilgrimage..." 
Emmitsburg home of Mt. St. Mary’s University and the Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton
Philadelphia see St. John Newman encased in a glass altar 
Montreal and Quebec see St. Josephs oratory and St Ann's Shrine.

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