Journey of Faith

By Mary Seamans and Elisabeth Smith

  1. Saint Anthony Chapel, Pittsburgh, Pa.

With a short drive, you can take some time to learn about the saints and see the largest display of relics in the world (outside of the Vatican) at Saint Anthony Chapel. More than 5,000 relics of the apostles and martyrs can be seen here, including a piece of Jesus’ crown of thorns, Mary’s veil and particles of the true cross. There are also life-sized Stations of the Cross hand-carved in Germany and beautiful stained-glass windows depicting the apostles. While there, you can invite your favorite saints to pray for you on your journey of faith.

1700 Harpster St.,
Pittsburgh, Pa. 15212


Hours: Monday-Thursday and Saturday, noon-3 p.m., including gift shop; tours suspended due to COVID-19.

Mass schedule: Sunday, 11:30 a.m.; Monday-Thursday and Saturday, 8:30 a.m.

Cost: Free, but goodwill offerings appreciated and $3 requested for votive lighting


  1. National Centre for Padre Pio, Barto, Pa.

The National Centre for Padre Pio is a four-and-a-half-hour excursion to Eastern Pennsylvania. This scenic and spiritual destination is ideal for families and parish groups to experience the powerful presence of Padre Pio. His life, work and mission are brought to life through the largest collection of Padre Pio relics in the U.S. You can visit a replica of the Franciscan chapel from San Giovanni Rotondo, Italy, which features an authentic confessional where Padre Pio heard confessions. There are also full-scale recreations of the room in Pietrelcina, Italy, where he was born, and his friary cell, where you can see his simple, spiritual lifestyle. 

111 Barto Road, Barto, Pa. 19504


Hours: Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. 

Mass schedule: Mass is celebrated the second Wednesday of each month at noon and the first and third Saturdays at 10:30 a.m. The rosary is prayed daily at 11:30 a.m.

Cost: Free

  1. Sight and Sound Theatre, Lancaster, Pa.

Powerful biblical stories come to life at the Sight and Sound Theatre, just a three-hour drive away. The theater features a 200-foot wrap-around stage and 40-foot tall sets, and hundreds of live animals. This summer, you can see “David,” the story of the master poet, fearless warrior and anointed king. It continues through 2022.

300 Hartman Bridge Road,
Ronks, Pa. 17572


Hours: Box office: Monday-Saturday, 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

Cost: Adults, $69 Monday-Thursday, $79 Friday, $89 Saturday and Sunday; children, $39


  1. Saint John Paul II National Shrine, Washington, D.C.

A trip to the Saint John Paul II National Shrine will renew and strengthen your faith. You can journey through the remarkable life and papacy of Karol Wojtyla via the expansive exhibit “A Gift of Love: The Life of Saint John Paul II,” which includes videos, artifacts, images and interactive displays.

The shrine features the Luminous Mysteries Chapel and the Redemptor Hominis Church, both filled with beautiful and profoundly theological mosaics. You can attend daily Mass and confession, take a guided tour, and listen to talks. 

 3900 Harewood Road NE, Washington, D.C. 20017

[email protected]

Hours: Shrine: Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Exhibit: Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Mass schedule: Monday-Saturday, noon; Sunday, 11 a.m. and 2 and 7 p.m.; Art of Prayer, Sunday, 6 p.m.; Prayer at the Hour of Mercy at 3 p.m. daily and open to the public Sunday

Cost: Free


  1. Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, Washington, D.C.

On your trip to Washington, you can visit the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. As the Patronal Church of U.S. Catholics, this place of pilgrimage and prayer is visited by 1 million people annually (visitors have included Pope Francis, Pope Benedict XVI, St. Pope John Paul II and St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta). Individuals and groups can attend Mass and take a guided tour, which includes visits to chapels on the Crypt Level and the Great Upper Church, plus information about the shrine’s history and architecture and the sacred artwork.

400 Michigan Ave. NE,
Washington, D.C. 20017


Hours: 6 a.m.-6 p.m. daily

Mass schedule: Sunday, 7:30 a.m. in the Crypt Church and 9 and 10:30 a.m., noon, 2:30 and 4:30 p.m. in the Great Upper Church; weekdays, 7 and 8 a.m. and 12:10 and 5:15 p.m. in the Crypt Church.

Cost: Free, including tours


Subscribe today!