By Lindsay Steele
The Catholic Messenger
On Aug. 13, 112 pilgrims from the Iowa City area filled two buses headed for the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in LaCrosse, Wis.
“It was a day of spiritual renewal, fellowship, heightened awareness of God’s presence in nature and most importantly Mary’s assurance of her tender loving care for all who seek her intercession,” said Meliza Wise, an organizer and a member of St. Thomas More Parish in Coralville.
The pilgrimage was the fourth of six monthly Fatima events occurring in the Iowa City Deanery this year. The events take place on the 13th of the month from May through October, as did the apparitions to the three shepherd children in Fatima, Portugal, in 1917.
Father Rudolph Juarez, pastor of St. Patrick Parish in Iowa City, served as the pilgrimage’s spiritual director and celebrated Mass at the shrine.
The events have raised money for Mary’s Meals through freewill donations. Mary’s Meals aims to provide chronically hungry children with one meal every school day, encouraging education that can lift them out of poverty in later life. The pilgrimage raised more than $1,000 for Mary’s Meals.
The next Fatima event will be an evening of multicultural Marian songs and dances at the Coralville parish Sept. 13 at 7 p.m.