Walk To Knock

The Irish Camino – Walk to Knock

“To break the chains of sins in which through fear of them being discovered shackle Gods people from working for the Lord”

“Peace in World, peace in our country, peace in our homes and peace in our hearts”

The Irish Camino

It is quite common for our lady in Medjugorje to end her messages to the visionaries with the statement “Thank you responding to my call”.  Now the Mother of God is speaking directly to you. However you made the decision, Our Blessed Mother invites you to walk to Her Shrine in Knock, Ireland. There, the Lamb of God awaits to greet you.

A pilgrimage serves as a powerful means of connecting with biblical figures, as it allows individuals to physically walk in the footsteps of these revered figures and experience a sense of spiritual closeness. By retracing the paths taken by the Holy Family, the Apostles, and other saints, pilgrims can deepen their understanding of their faith and cultivate a personal encounter with Christ, ultimately fostering a profound inner journey towards heaven as we continue the Road to the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Why Make a Pilgrimage

A comparison could be made between the Israelites walking through the Desert and the Lord leading them back to the Holy Land. Our walk to freedom begins here. In addition, we have the image of the Holy Family returning to Nazareth after they were exiled in Egypt. The countless times Joseph, Mary, and Jesus walked the 100+ miles between Nazareth and Jerusalem for religious festivals is another example. The many pilgrimages and missions Jesus and the apostles made during his three years in public ministry would in fact have involved walking similar distances. In the days following Jesus’ death, Paul and Barnabas traveled thousands of miles on foot, spreading the Good News throughout Turkey, Greece, and Italy. Likewise, the Apostles and Disciples spread the gospel throughout Europe, Africa, and Asia. We must not forget the most important pilgrimage of all, Our Lord Jesus Christ’s walk up the hill to Calvary.

On this pilgrimage, you will experience a very special unity with the Saints of the Church, the Old Testament patriarchs, and the Holy Family. In making this intentional journey, it is easy to focus on the physical, but it is even more important to focus on the inner journey towards heaven and Christ’s love for us.

Walk to Knock – What’s it all about?

In 1988 a group of 21 men and 1 woman, 12 people from the lay movement group called Search and 12 people from Cursillo, decided to do a Peace Pilgrimage and walk from the centre of Derry City to the shrine in Knock Co.Mayo Ireland.

At the time Derry, being apart of Northern Ireland was still in the height of the Troubles, (a 30 year long conflict) which caused so much destruction and devastation within the Island of Ireland and the British Isles as a whole. Russia and the USA was entrenched in the Cold War and the whole political situation for the people of Derry was very bleak.

Spurred on by the Holy Spirit and under the protection of the Sacred heart of Jesus and Immaculate heart of Mary, these 12 men set forth on their Conquest, Praying for Peace in our World, Peace in our Country, Peace in our Homes and most of all Peace in our hearts. They carried the intentions of all their loved ones to the foot of the Cross were the Lamb of God in Knock appeared, alongside Our Lady Queen of Peace, St Joseph, St John and all the Angels and Saints.

The following year in 1989 the Search and Cursillo group decided to walk to Lough Derg for a pilgrimage and then in the year 1990 Derry went back to walking to knock. This time though over 100 pilgrims joined in on this walk for peace. This walk has taken place every year around the 2nd/3rd Week in July and at its peak had 200+ pilgrims.

From 1993 the Down and Connor Cursillo group took up the call of our Lady and walked from Belfast to Knock. With the troubles still ongoing and the volitile situation in Northern Ireland, the decision was then made to start the Down and Connors Cursillo Walk to knock from Middletown, to stop any confrontations or tensions between the different religious communities. This pilgrimage usually has between 80 to 120+ pilgrims.

In 2003 the Dubliners joined their northern brothers and sisters and took up Our Ladys call to walk to Knock for Peace. But I believe its important to highlight that Dublin men and woman had been walking to knock every year from the early 70s right up until 1987. With the Cursillo group only discovering this on their first Dublin walk in 2003. So our lady has always been calling people on a walking pilgrimage to Knock long before Cursillo heard the call. But you could say it is a Godincident that the Derry Cursillo and Search started walking to Knock the year after the Dublin people stopped their pilgrimage. So this walking Pilgrimage to Knock can trace steps further back than 1988. This walk would usually have between 30 to 50 pilgrims and at its peak there could of been up to 70+ pilgrims.

Then finally in 2015 a small group of 10 to 12 Pilgrims started walking to Knock from Charleville Co. Cork. You could say all 4 corners of Ireland walking to the Lamb of God in Knock each July.

You probably heard the expression “celebration of the Eucharist”, well here in Knock on the Sunday that all corners of Ireland converge, you will experience a true celebration of the Eucharist at the Mass.

Since the walk began peace has come to N.Ireland and fall of communist Russia was all  signs of Peace in our World. But Christ didnt come to quell politcal peace he came to provide us with the peace this world can not give us and more now than ever before is our Christian morals, values and freedoms under attack.

Since the pandemic the numbers of pilgrims has reduced, and also its become more difficult to logistically organise as communities do not tend to be as welcoming to Christian Pilgrims, but regardless we will plow on every year walking to Knock.

So we call upon the communities in Ireland to open their hearts and homes to Pilgrims and for the whole world to come to Ireland and join us in Pilgrimage to Knock, where the Lamb of God is awaiting to lead us into a new era of Peace.

Itinerary

Belfast to Knock

Day Start End

  • Day 1 Wednesday 17th July – Middletown to Clones
  • Day 2 Thursday 18th July – Clones to Ballinamore
  • Day 3 Friday 19th July – Ballinamore to Boyle
  • Day 4 Saturday 20th July – Boyle to Ballaghaderreen
  • Day 5 Sunday 21st July – Ballaghaderreen to Knock

Cork to Knock

Day Start End Distance

  • Day 1 Monday 15th July – Charleville 10am Mass Limerick 
  • Day 2 Tuesday 16th July – Limerick to Nenagh 
  • Day 3 Wednesday 18th July – Nenagh to banagher 
  • Day 4 Thursday 19th July – Banagher  to Balinasloe. (Mass at Clonmacnoise) 
  • Day 5 Friday 19th July – Ballinasloe to Athleague (Join up with Dublin walk) 
  • Day 6 Saturday 20th July – Athleague to Garranlahan
  • Day 7 Sunday 21st July – Garranlahan to Knock

Derry to Knock

Day Start End Distance

  • Day 1 Tuesday 16th July –  Derry to Ballybofey
  • Day 2 Wednesday 17th July – Ballybofey to Ballintra
  • Day 3 Thursday 18th July  – Ballintra to Cliffoney
  • Day 4 Friday 19th July – Cliffoney to Collooney
  • Day 5 Saturday 20th July – Collooney to Charlsetown
  • Day 6 Sunday 21st July – Charlsetown to Knock 

Dublin to Knock

DAY – Start End 

  • Day 1 Tuesday 17th July – Blanchardstown to Maynooth 
  • Day 2 Wednesday 18th July – Maynooth to Clonard
  • Day 3 Thursday 19th July – Clonard to Athlone
  • Day 4 Friday 20th July – Athlone to Athleague (Join up with Cork walk)
  • Day 5 Saturday 21st July – Athleague to Garranlahan
  • Day 6 Sunday 22nd July – Garranlahan to Knock 

The Road to Knock film takes you on the walk of the annual pilgrimage made by 1000’s of people each year from Derry, Belfast, Dublin and Cork to the Holy Shrine of Our Lady of Knock in Co.May, Ireland. After a near death experience falling 70 feet from a waterfall in Thailand, Bafta winning writer Alan Field made his first documentary about his journey along the ancient Camino De Santiago. Now we find his journey taking him to Ireland as he continues to try and understand more about his newly rediscovered faith.

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