Saturday, May 5, was a bright and sunny day in Green Bay, Wisconsin, with temperatures reaching the low 70s. Thankfully, a light breeze kept pilgrims cool as they trekked from the Shrine of St. Joseph through the city, along the river trail, past the bay, and down lonely country roads toward the National Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help.
Over 2,000 people attended the 6th Annual Walk to Mary on May 5. Pilgrims were young and old, and came from more than twenty states, including California, Massachusetts, Nevada, North Carolina, Texas, Florida, and all over the Midwest. The Walk to Mary has grown significantly over the years, and many were first-time pilgrims this year who heard about the journey and decided to join in.
After 21 miles, there were some sore feet, but there were plenty of smiles to go around. Old friends were reunited and new friends were made – there’s something about a pilgrimage that brings people together in prayer, solidarity, and friendship.
The spirit of reverence is what makes the Walk to Mary so special. One mother summed up the day when her young child asked her, “Why are we walking so far?”
“We do this to honor Mary,” she replied.
“We walk because life is a journey of discovery and revelation, not a destination. Along the way, we tire, toil and triumph. We empty ourselves out, making room for the Holy Spirit to expand within us. When we arrive, tired and exhausted, we encounter the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help as a refreshing oasis along life’s journey, offering respite for all who are weary and thirsty.” – WalktoMary.com