Saint Mary Magdalene Novena Pilgrimage – July 2016

July 23-30, 2016 are the dates of this 7-Day Saint Mary Magdalene Novena Pilgrimage, that has been offered to a total of 6 pilgrims. We will stay in a VILLA in the town of St. Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume for the entire 7 nights and follow the path of Saint Mary Magdalene after the Resurrection when she came to Provence (47AD) and ended up spending the last thirty years of her life in a Cave up a mountain called La Sainte-Baume.

If you are interested in flying to the South of France and spending time to get to know this exceptional friend of Jesus in a very personal way, please contact me and I will see how I can help you.

PaulaLawlorcontact Paula

The most convenient airport in which to land is MARSEILLE AIRPORT, where I will be able to meet you. The Mary Magdalene Pilgrimage will focus on the life of Mary Magdalene after the Resurrection and on her companions who sailed from Palestine to Gaul (now France) in 47 AD and ended up converting all of what is now Provence.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALa Sainte-Baume in the rockface of the Massif-de-la-Sainte-Baume

Cave of La Sainte-BaumeThe Cave of Saint Mary Magdalene is called La Sainte-Baume (holy cave).

Relic of Saint Mary Magdalene in the CaveIn the Cave is her relic (a piece of her tibia) kept in a gold reliquary.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHostellerie-de-la-Sainte-Baume just below the Cave

The Hostellerie-de-la-Sainte-Baume is run by the Dominicans who have been guardians of Saint Mary Magdalene’s relics since 1295. Saint Mary Magdalene is co-patroness of their Order of Preachers. The Hostellerie is located just below the Cave of Saint Mary Magdalene.


Sunday Feast Day Mass & Procession

On Sunday, July 24th there is a Feast Day Mass at the Basilique Sainte Marie-Madeleine in St. Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume and later in the day there is a procession of the Skull of Mary Magdalene in its gold reliquary through the streets of the town.

Feast Day Mass - Saint Mary MagdaleneMary Magdalene’s skull in a gold reliquary in the Basilica

Skull of Mary Magdalene

Day trips to towns in Provence
following the footsteps of Mary Magdalene…


In 47AD Mary Magdalene and her companions landed in this town where the Rhône meets the Mediterranean Sea. Saint Mary Jacobe and Saint Mary Salome, who were also at the empty tomb with Mary Magdalene, were on the boat with her. The two Marys stayed in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer. Their relics, which we will visit in the parish church, were found buried under the church.
saintes-maries-de-la-mer churchSaintes-Maries


Mary Magdalene’s brother Lazarus, who was raised from the dead by Jesus, traveled on the boat from Palestine to Gaul with her. He became the first bishop of Marseille. Lazarus was imprisoned and beheaded. We will visit Abbaye Saint-Victor down by the old port and see Lazarus’ confessional. His relics, which we will also visit, are in the Cathédrale Sainte-Marie-Majeure.

Marseille - Sainte Marie-Majeure

Relic of Lazarus


Mary Magdalene’s sister Martha was also on the boat that traveled from Palestine to Gaul. After landing in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, Martha traveled north to Tarascon. We will visit Collégiale Sainte-Marthe in Tarascon. It was built over the place where Saint Martha lived. During the Saracen invasion the relics of Saint Martha were hidden. They were discovered in 1187 and the church was built.

collegiale sainte marthe-2

Saint Martha


Mary Magdalene traveled with Maximin, one of the seventy-two disciples, to Aix. There they dedicated a chapel to Jesus Christ called “Saint Sauveur.” The 1st century chapel floor still remains inside the Cathédrale Saint-Sauveur which was built over it.  We will spend a day in Aix-en-Provence and will visit this holy place where Saint Mary Magdalene and St. Maximin preached before she retreated to the Cave of La Sainte-Baume. Maximin stayed in Aix and became its first bishop. In the sacristy of Cathédrale Saint-Sauveur are the relics of St. Maximin and the foot of the apostle St. Andrew.

Cathedrale Saint Sauveur

Foot of Saint Andrew


lavender field


Tour Guide Paula Lawlor

Paula Lawlor

Paula Lawlor is the author of A LOVE DEVOUT—The True Untold Story of Mary Magdalene and Mary Magdalene in the South of France. She was tour coordinator of the 2011 Tour of the Relic of Saint Mary Magdalene in California and tour coordinator of the 2013 Tour of the Relic of Saint Mary Magdalene in Illinois and St. Louis, Missouri. Paula and Véronique Flayol organized and led their first Novena Tour of PROVENCE to Saint Mary Magdalene in July 2013. Paula is hoping to help establish a National Shrine to Saint Mary Magdalene at St. Dominic Catholic Church in Denver, Colorado.