On the afternoon of November 2, 2023, Friar Michael LASKY led a group of twenty-two friars from the Seraphicum College in Rome on a JPIC Franciscan Pilgrimage to the Basilicas of St. John Lateran and St. Mary Major. Other friars from the Seraphicum were invited to join the pilgrimage online, since the Franciscan meditations were made available in both podcast and written form (see the links below).

Focusing on the apse mosaics in both of the basilicas, the opening meditations highlighted the Franciscan spirituality inherent in the art.

  • Basilica of St. John Lateran – “Tree of Life: Jesus’ Gift of the Holy Spirit from St. John’s Gospel”
  • Basilica of St. Mary Major – The Canticle of Creation and the Assumption of Mary: Rooted in the Mystery of the Incarnation

Because the pilgrimage was held on All Souls’ Day, the second meditation in each basilica was inspired by the tombs of the popes buried there.

  • Basilica of St. John Lateran – “Innocent III and Leo XIII: Franciscanism as the Foundation for Catholic Social Teaching”
  • Basilica of St. Mary Major – “Nicholas IV and Sixtus V: Franciscans Popes Fostering Devotion to the Incarnation and the Eucharist”

These meditations can be accessed online at FranciscanVoice.org

Of course, the pilgrimage ended with a stop for gelato. Finally, a note of thanks to Friar Peter PIKULIK for the photographs.

Friar Michael LASKY