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The life of a pilgrim

Written by Marie-Anne Jacques, Lucie Parenteau, Fatima Cervantes, Gustavo Martinez, Pascal Richard, Brian Crowe on Thursday, 01 October 2009. Posted in Pilgrims of St. Michael

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To work as a Full-Time Pilgrim is to work for an ideal. First of all we wish to work for God, whom we try to please in everything. After we work for our neighbour who is struggling in a Godless world and being crushed by unjust economic systems, "structures of sin" as Pope John Paul II called them.

Being in the movement as a Full-Time, we look for a more intimate relationship with God. We put our Faith into practice by doing apostolate, having the spirit of service and learning detachment from earthly things.

We work through the media, especially the press, in order to inform the people of the necessity and possibility of changing the economy through the Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church. This is the charisma of the Pilgrims of St. Michael.

The apostolate is the center of our work. We go door-to-door to visit people in their homes; we do conferences, distribute leaflets, talk on the radio and visit our subscribers. We do this in every country throughout the world.

Besides our yearly International Congress and Siege of Jericho (adoration in front of the Blessed Sacrament), we also have seminars on Social Credit that have been organized at the Headquarters in Rougemont for the last couple years. Sessions are given every day to a multi-language audience that is even honored by the presence of Bishops and Cardinals. Translations, the sound system, filming, choir, food and lodging, and driving to and from the airport are done by the Full-Times with the precious support of the local Pilgrims who come for the event.

At the Headquarters, we learn to live in community and we work where we are needed: in the office, kitchen, laundry room, printing shop, construction, and so on.

Prayer life is very present in the Full-Time Pilgrim’s daily schedule that includes Mass every day, the 15-decade Rosary, consecration prayers and other prayers. Regular reception of the Sacraments is practiced by everyone.

No one takes vows being that we prefer to work as lay missionaries, this way we can freely work for social reform. Even though we do not make formal vows, we practice poverty, chastity and obedience.

Everyone is free to stay as a Full-Time Pilgrim as long as they wish. Some stay a year; others will stay their whole lives. There are others that come to live at the Headquarters just to know us, to experience community life, stay for a certain formation or help the movement out in their free time. Because of this, many end up coming and going, but bonds are created and these people often remain in the organization, working as Pilgrims of Saint Michael in many countries throughout the world.

The movement is spreading all over the world. Thus, young people from different countries often join, which is an occasion for one to know more about different cultures and sometimes even learn a different language. Those who came never regretted their stay. One never feels sorry for having given a part of their lives to God in such a way. Living with people that have the same ideals and goals really helps to reinforce one’s good convictions and objectives.

Lucie Parenteau
Pilgrim of St. Michael for 10 years



When I go "door-to-door" asking for a decade of the Rosary I learn so much, I feel that I can be useful for the people who receive us. Sometimes at first they don’t want to pray but at the end of the prayer it is incredible how they can change and open their hearts, there is no doubt that the Virgin Mary helps us. With this experience you can see how much LOVE is missing in the world, you don’t need to do extraordinary things to know that people need love. And true LOVE is found in God.

Fatima Cervantes – Mexico



During the tours of apostolate that we do as Pilgrims, we have the opportunity to work with all cultures and people. People today are missing that human contact and one of the most rewarding characteristics of this work is that God often uses us as His instruments to bring hope. Every day God works miracles and in the life of a missionary often we are fortunate enough to see them happen. I have learned more in my three years with the Pilgrims of St. Michael then my ten years of working in the world and it has brought me closer to God.

Marie Anne Jacques – USA



As a Pilgrim of Saint Michael I have the opportunity to listen to others needs, trying to give solutions from my view as a lay Catholic. This could be to give them advice and guide them to the Church or a priest. Thus, Charity towards others comes first. I also get to know more about the Catholic Faith in different parts of the world to learn more about other countries and people, different cultures, languages and customs.

Gustavo Martinez – Paraguay



I came at 15 years old and I’ve been working as a Full-Time for 10 years already. I really think that God led me here to serve Him better. The world needs justice, needs God. This is a good place to use ones’ talents for the good of humanity. These years have been an opportunity to put myself at the service of others without expecting anything in return and living around people who care. I can say I found another family here.

Lucie Parenteau – Canada



It’s a duty for every young person to be a witness to the Truth. I am a missionary and my family is also part of this movement that teaches the Catholic Faith. The experience as a missionary will remain in your heart for your whole life. This movement is unique because it joins the economy with the faith, in which the lay Catholics have a very important role to play and whom Benedict XVI invites to commit themselves and to study the Social Doctrine of the Church.

Pascal Richard – Canada



During our tour of apostolate in Ontario, Pascal and I were able to distribute leaflets and visit family and friends to subscribe them to the MICHAEL Journal. We had a daily program of the Rosary, Holy Mass and apostolate work. We visited many families who were subscribed by (the late) Pierre Marchildon and they were very happy to renew their subscription to the Journal. I learned a lot, and it is very encouraging to go to the families. We see that they need our visit and that personal contact. We are many times able to bring them hope in times of trouble.

Brian Crowe – Canada

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