Group 170 are in Lourdes.
Thank you so much to all who helped to get us ready!
Meet Our Kids
We have finished all our preparations (except packed lunches and last minutes panics) and we're all ready to gather for the coach to head off to Lourdes! A very exciting day....
Sunday - a long journey to Lourdes
What a long but exciting day! After waving goodbye to our family and friends we set off for the airport. When we got there we had all went through security and some of us got to go through the brand new light scanning machine which is safe for everyone to use. We stayed for a while in departures and had some great fun playing thumb wars and making (and flying) paper aeroplanes. Our plane was delayed but sooner than we were expecting we were allowed through to the lounge where we met some other groups (including one who was singing very enthusiastically!). The flight was amazing as we managed to take off in the daytime, land at night and fly through the beautiful sunset. After a short coach ride we got to our hotel where we had some more food and then went straight to bed. We can't wait to explore in the morning!
We all slept very well and once we were dressed it was time to discover the breakfast buffet. It was awesome, with pain au chocolate, doughnuts, fruit salad, cheese and cold meat as well as other pastries, croissants, toast, cereal, fruit juice and got chocolate! Once we'd had our fill, we met our youth helpers who came to play with us. We went to the meadow, and enjoyed playing football, parachute games, and face painting in the lovely Pyrenean sunshine. We went back to the hotel and had mass there with our youth helper friends. After a big lunch, we went to a special liturgy which taught us about Saint Bernadette and why we visit Lourdes. We all really enjoyed the singing and dancing! We played with our youth helpers some more before dinner. Last thing was quick baths before snuggling down in our beds for a very welcome night's sleep.
What a lovely day! After breakfast we went to the double-decker cathedral and had our group photo taken in front of it. We all looked very smart! Then we went shopping quickly before getting on the coach to go to Hosanna House. On the journey we saw the mountains which was amazing! At Hosanna House we cuddled baby rabbits, goats and guinea pigs, played with shuffleboards, table tennis, basketball and giant games, made stained glass windows and rainbow fish, watched cartoons, had our faces painted and went shopping. Then we went back to the hotel for our lunch which was a salad then yummy breaded chicken with creamy potatoes and vegetables followed by mango cheesecake.
In the afternoon we had mass together in a chapel and found out what happened when Mary Magdalene met the risen Jesus for the first time. We played in the meadow before going back to the hotel to play with the youth helpers before dinner. That was yummy too then we went out to the torchlight procession. It was so late it was nearly dark! We had glow sticks and really enjoyed watching all of the pretty lights and listening to the singing. We spotted lots of interesting banners! By the time we got to bed it was really quite late at night but we went to sleep excited about our special trip to the cafe tomorrow morning.
We were blessed with beautiful sunshine which was great news as we spent lots of time outdoors today. Our morning began with a trip to a cafe, where we had the most amazing breakfasts including sausage and chips, omelettes and lasagne! It was lucky that we fuelled ourselves up as we next went for our walk around the old town. We saw the church where Saint Bernadette was baptised, the mill where she lived when she was young, and the cell in which her family were living at the time of her apparition. We then went down to the grotto and quietly walked through, touching the spring water.
We went back to the hotel for lunch (even though we weren't too hungry!) then went to mass with the other groups from our region. It was great fun and we read prayers beautifully in front of everyone. After mass we went to the meadow and played with the youth helpers.
In the evening we had a fantastic pyjama party where our teddies got to sleep in a special bed and we designed our own pillow cases, sang a starry song and played 'pin the sleepy eyes on the lion'. It was really fun! After that we went and had our dinner in the restaurant wearing our pyjamas (what a back-to-front day!). Lastly we went downstairs and had a relaxing bedtime story with hot chocolate. Night night!
Another lovely day! We started the day with our special Trust Mass where all 4,000 HCPT pilgrims joined together in the underground basilica. We were even live-steamed on YouTube! (Have you watched it yet?) We really loved the singing and dancing and the amazing atmosphere and found out why Jesus is called the 'living water'.
After mass, we went back to the hotel for lunch... pasta bolognese! We all really enjoyed it. After lunch we went to play on the meadow and then stopped off at the ice-cream parlour where we had giant sundaes and crepes. Then it was time for a final rehearsal before our talent show.
We went downstairs to find our audience waiting... and then we performed! We were fantastic and everyone in the audience loved it! They clapped and cheered so much that they broke the clapometer and in the end we had to all be joint winners and receive certificates, chocolate eggs and medals. We were so very proud of ourselves and our leaders and youth helpers were really proud of us too.
Today was another fantastic day in the sunshine. Straight after breakfast we went on the coach to travel to the village of St Savin in the mountains. We had a lovely mass in the 12th century parish church with our friends from Group 14 and our youth helper groups. Afterwards we had our photo taken in front of the beautiful mountain view. Then it was time to get back on the coach to travel to McDonalds. We all enjoyed our McDonalds and ate very well!
After lunch we got changed and went down to the meadow to play with the parachute, play football, play card games and make friendship bracelets.
While we were on the meadow we had a really lovely, peaceful moment, colouring in our names and writing and drawing those that we wanted to pray for to stick on to our special group candle. As we individually placed our stickers, everyone quietly prayed for us. Then we took our candle to the candelabra to light it. We watched it for a few minutes and prayed together- it was really beautiful.
Later on we played with the youth helpers then went to dinner before story and bed.