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Why Choose Us?

Pilgrimages organized by the Pilgrim Center of Hope are all customized.

Each is consecrated to Jesus and Mary, asking the Lord’s blessing and Our Lady’s intercession for each pilgrim.

This Ministry of Pilgrimages makes it our mission to help you, the pilgrim, have the maximum experience. We realize that this may be a once-in-a-lifetime experience, a major financial cost for some. We keep these factors in mind when planning each pilgrimage.

Be careful to distinguish tours from pilgrimages: A pilgrimage is a journey of faith offering daily Mass at various holy sites, time for scripture reading, reflection and prayer, and incorporating many intentions such as spiritual renewal, rediscovery of the richness of the Catholic faith and its history, prayer, and experiences such as meeting with the local Church.

Our experience in organizing pilgrimages since 1988 is a great benefit to you.

Other tours or groups may be using tour companies that have a high volume of business. This often affects the end result. For example, many tour companies in Israel and in the U.S. receive a “cookie-cutter” package to travel in Israel. These, more than often, are treated as tours that include museums, quick visits to churches, and less time in the Holy Land. Some of these “low advertised prices” do not include airline taxes, tips and meals.

Will my pilgrimage organizers lead me spiritually?

In addition to the priest who serves as spiritual director (chaplain), our experienced group leaders are formed in evangelization and theology through the Ministry of Pilgrimages. They periodically also share reflections and lead prayers during the pilgrimage.

Who is handling the logistical details?

We work with Consolidated Tours, Inc. (CTO), a professional, ethical, and reputable Catholic and American tour operator, in making all reservations and assisting with preparation. We maintain contact with a CTO representative at the destination, assuring us of personalized service.

For All International Pilgrimages

  • We are a non-profit ministry of pilgrimages, not a travel agency or business. Our bottom line and focus is always The Lord, not the money to be made.
  • Group sizes are kept small (30-40 persons) so each individual pilgrim can have the maximum experience.
  • Pilgrims meet two or three times in advance of travel for preparation, familiarity and prayer.
  • We experience the holy sites; we don’t rush through them. Time for prayer and reflection is very important.
  • We have daily Mass at a holy site, as well as spiritual reflection and teachings throughout each day.
  • We participate in Catholic devotions such as the Rosary, Stations of the Cross, and Divine Mercy Chaplet.
  • Besides having an exceptionally spiritual experience, we include recreation and fellowship for a great time.
  • Each of our pilgrims receives a customized Pilgrim Book which includes prayers, schedule, maps, Scripture references, historical and biblical facts, and other information related to each holy site. (Many pilgrims continue to use this book as a journal and prayer tool after their pilgrimage.)

Special to the Holy Land

What relationship do my pilgrimage organizers have with the Holy Land community?

Our founders, Deacon Tom and Mary Jane Fox, have been to the Holy Land and the Middle East over 65 times – exploring, leading groups, and capturing video interviews for educational purposes. Over the years, they have developed deep friendships with the local people, and are known by Latin Patriarchate bishops.

Deacon Tom and Mary Jane are also Knight Commander & Dame Commander members of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulcher of Jerusalem.

  • Because we have been to the Holy Land over 65 times, we’ve developed strong relationships with the local people that make it possible for us to have special and unique experiences.
  • Most other group trips to the Holy Land that you will find do not employ Christian guides; Christians are only 200 out of the 7000 total licensed Holy Land guides. Especially in the Holy Land, we do employ Christian guides and patronize Christian hotels, restaurants, and shops as an act of solidarity and to support them.
  • When possible, we arrange a private audience with the Latin Patriarch or his auxiliary bishop.
  • We meet with the local Palestinian Christians (members of our Mother Church) to hear their story, and celebrate Mass with a local parish when possible.

Our pilgrimages follow the pilgrimage directives given by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and guidance we have personally received from bishops of the Latin Patriarchate (Jerusalem Diocese). Specific examples of our following these guidelines include:

  1. Prayer: Daily Mass, devotions, meditation, Scripture reflections, and prayer for peace & justice in the Holy Land. Renewal of baptismal vows at the Jordan River and marriage vows at Cana are some of our favorite practices, as well.
  2. Solidarity with the local Christians (Mother Church): Visiting a local Catholic institution or parish, meeting and listening to the stories of local Christians
  3. Patronizing local Christian guides
  4. Patronizing Christian-owned businesses: Such business contributes to the economic development of Arab Christian communities and helps retain the threatened Catholic presence in the Holy Land
  5. Meet with Franciscans (custodians of the Holy Land)
  6. Educating each pilgrim about the injustices and struggles in the Holy Land, particularly the lived experience of local Christians
  7. Inter-religious ties: Meeting local people of non-Christian faiths; visiting Catholic Relief Services project sites including Muslim women’s group in Bethlehem; visiting the Western / Wailing Wall; occasional dialogue with interfaith panel and pilgrims

All Local Pilgrimages

  • Each pilgrim’s encounter with Christ is our focus.  We maintain an atmosphere of pilgrimage rather than a “religious tour”.
  • We experience the pilgrim sites; we don’t rush through them. Time for prayer and reflection is very important.
  • We incorporate Scripture, and the liturgical calendar whenever possible.
  • We participate in Catholic devotions such as Adoration, the Rosary, Stations of the Cross, and Divine Mercy Chaplet.
  • Besides having an exceptionally spiritual experience, we include recreation and fellowship for a great time.
  • Pilgrims are given a spiritual tool, such as suggestions for family prayer, or resources for further spiritual growth.

Wallet-size “mini brochures” about the Ministry of Pilgrimages are available at Pilgrim Center of Hope. Stop by and pick some up! These are a simple way to learn & share.

For our friends out of town, we’ll be happy to mail you some. Give us a call or email.

  • Plain Text Pamphlet



    Why A Pilgrimage?

    A pilgrimage is an experience of GodÕs grace that not only affects our relationship with Him, but also all of our other relationships, and it builds up the Body of ChristÑthe universal Church.  Pilgrimages are an ancient devotion in our faith tradition.

    Pilgrim Center of Hope is a non-profit

    ministry that answers ChristÕs call by guiding people to personally encounter Him through pilgrimages, conferences, and outreach. Since its earliest inspiration, pilgrimage has been the foundation and wellspring of this ministry.

    Journey with us to the Holy Land, Marian Shrines (Lourdes, Fatima, Our Lady of Guadalupe), In the Footsteps of the Apostles & Saints (Italy), In the Footsteps of St. Paul, and more pilgrim destinations!

    The Pilgrim Center of  Hope Difference

    As a part of Pilgrim Center of Hope non-profit ministry, our Ministry of Pilgrimages is not a travel agency or business. All pilgrimages are customized, with each pilgrimÕs needs in mind and with Christ as our focus. Groups are kept small (30-40 persons) for individual pilgrimsÕ maximum experience.  We experience holy sites; we do not rush through them.  Time for prayer and reflection is very important. We have daily Mass at holy sites, as well as spiritual reflection and teachings throughout the day. 

    Each pilgrim receives a customized Pilgrim Book, containing historical information about the pilgrimage sites, maps, practical daily tips, prayers, Scripture readings, and more. Many continue to use it as a journal and prayer tool after their pilgrimage. Our pilgrimages follow U.S. Catholic bishopsÕ directivesÑas well as guidance personally received from bishops of the Latin Patriarchate (Diocese of Jerusalem). Besides an exceptionally spiritual experience, we include recreation and fellowship for a great time.

    WhatÕs A Pilgrimage Group Leader?

    Unique to our pilgrimages are these experienced, trained, dedicated individuals who have applied for, and been apprenticed in, this ministry. They are active in each stage of your journey. BEFORE: Helps to plan each day. Facilitates your spiritual and practical preparation. DURING: Accompanies & serves individual needs; frees you of stress from logistical details by working with local guide, driver, Spiritual Director, etc., to ensure your maximum experience. AFTER: Remains united in prayer for you and your intentions.

    PilgrimsÕ Testimonies

    I have not been able to find any pilgrimage group like this one. ItÕs not a business; itÕs their beautiful ministry. Ð Frances

    We have been blessed immeasurably over the years because of the pilgrimages we have been on with you, miracles we have witnessed, and people who have touched our lives.  Thank you again for being a part of our ongoing spiritual awakening. Our Catholic faith is amazing and through our pilgrimages with you, we have been witness to more than we could have ever dreamed.  Ð Tony & Cindy

    Pilgrim Center of Hope really understands that a pilgrimage is an opportunity for prayer all along the way. . .[and is] really living out one of the Gospel messages, which is to bring people closer to an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ.

    Fr. James Wilcox

    Support from Church Leadership

    I truly appreciate your dedication to all the people you evangelize through your pilgrimages and for your love of God and Church.  The people who have experienced your ministry connect with the Lord and the Church in new ways, and that is invaluable. May the Lord continue to bless the work and ministry of the Pilgrim Center of Hope and thank you for your faithful service to the Church and the people of God.

    Most Rev. Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller, M.Sp.S.

    Archbishop of San Antonio


    7680 Joe Newton

    San Antonio, Texas 78251




    Visit our web site for upcoming dates, common questions, request a special pilgrimage, see photos, videos, and more!

We would like to tell you about how much more these pilgrimages offer!

Your calls are welcomed at (210) 521-3377, or click here to contact us via email. These pilgrimages are powerful experiences! Come, journey with us!


"Your collaboration with the mission of the Latin Patriarchate is much appreciated. Be assured of your prayers for you, your evangelization ministry and your work of journeying with many during your pilgrimages to the Holy Land."

- His Beatitude Pierbattista Pizzaballa, OFM, Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem


"I truly appreciate your dedication to all the people you evangelize through your pilgrimages and for your love of God and Church.  May the Lord continue to guide and bless you..."

- Most Rev. Gustavo Garcia-Siller, M.Sp.S., Archbishop of San Antonio