By tradition, before the faith came to France, Chartres was the site of a devotion to a Virgin who was to give birth to God, but who had not yet come. This was fulfilled when God became man in the womb of the Virgin Mary, and devotion in Chartres was realised when Christianity came to Chartres.
Successive churches were built on the site until the present Cathedral was completed in the thirteenth century.
Since these earliest days, Chartres attracted Pilgrims, usually with a strong devotion to the Blessed Virgin. The Cathedral also houses the Holy Chemise of Our Lady which has provided protection to the faithful for countless generations.
The tradition of pilgrimage to Chartres was revived in the early 80s by a group of the laity which later became Notre-Dame de Chrétienté. It is resolutely based on the traditional devotions of the Church and the traditional practices of the faith.
Always under the protection of the Blessed Virgin, the Pilgrimage reaches back into history and breathes life into the faith which sustained numberless Catholics which went before us. It is there to take the soul on a journey from Notre Dame in Paris to Notre Dame in Chartres… from Our Lady to Our Lady.
|The Beginning at Paris|
The need to go to holy places to adore God, and His Blessed Mother, is hardwired into the human soul. To offer hardship and penance for our sins and the good of others is a gift of God and a mark of our faith – it is the mark of a Catholic, for it is the mark of Christ
And here in this place, at this time of the year, when the Holy Spirit comes down again on His Church, 10,000 people will walk to the honour of God and the love of Our Holy Mother the Church.
God planted this devotion to be fulfilled in our day, by us.