Cardinal George Pell

In 2017 the Pilgrimage will be led by His Eminence Cardinal George Pell AC, Prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy in the Vatican, with Fr Jeremy Davies and the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal.

Ordained a priest in 1966 Fr Pell continued his studies at Oxford University, during the course of which, as chaplain to Catholic students at Eton College,   he gained the distinction of celebrating the first Roman Catholic Mass at the college since the Reformation. He returned to Australia in 1971 to serve firstly as a parish priest and subsequently as rector of Corpus Christi College, where he had previously studied for the priesthood, and had also taken a key role in the college Australian Rules football team.

In July 1996 he was named seventh Archbishop of Melbourne, and then in 2001 eighth Archbishop of Sydney. In the years from then to his being created a Cardinal by Pope St John Paul II in 2003 he held various roles including consultor and then member of the  Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace ,  member of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Consultor and then member of the Pontifical Council for the Family. As a Cardinal he led the church in Australia in welcoming  World Youth Day 2008 in Australia, and was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI one of the Synod Fathers for the October 2012 Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization.

Since his appointment as Archbishop of Melbourne he has spoken strongly on a wide range of issues, defending the importance of religious belief in building a just society.

Cardinal Pell was appointed the inaugural and current Prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy in 2014 by Pope Francis.

Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe

The Pilgrimage will also be graced with the presence of the Miraculous Relic Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe, brought from its shrine in the Diocese of Northampton. Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster formally handed over the Miraculous Relic Image to the care of Bishop Peter Doyle, Bishop of Northampton, in a ceremony in the Church of The Holy Child and St Joseph, Bedford, on 29 Sept 2012