As part of the yearlong celebration of the 50th Jubilee of the Parish of St. Andrew the Apostle in Gibbsboro/ Voorhees, Msgr. Louis A. Marucci led a group of 22 pilgrims on a pilgrimage to the sacred sites of the Holy Land.
The pilgrim group, who arrived in Tel Aviv on June 21, spent a week visiting Tiberius, Capernaum, Mt. Tabor, Bethlehem, Nazareth, Jerusalem, and other holy places.
On the last day of the pilgrimage, while in Jerusalem, Msgr. Marucci was presented with the Pilgrim’s Shell of the Equestrian Order of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre by the Latin Patriarch, Foaud Boutros Twal.
Msgr. Marucci currently holds the distinction and title of Knight Commander of the Equestrian Order of the Knights of the Holy Sepulcher. The Pilgrim’s Shell is the highest honor of the Knights of the Holy Sepulcher and is typically awarded by the Latin Patriarch during a pilgrimage to Jerusalem.
The Pilgrim’s Shell consists of a scallop shell, which is the ancient badge of a pilgrim, in oxidized silver, in the center of which is placed the Jerusalem Cross of the Order in red enamel bordered with gold.
The Latin Patriarch received the St. Andrew pilgrims during an hour long private audience. He commented that since the Holy Land is the cradle of the three Abrahamic world religions – Judaism, Christianity and Islam – believers of these three related faiths share deep relations to this land selected by God for the execution of his salvific plans for humanity, and therefore long to place their feet on the ground of their religious origins and history.