Saint Mary Magdalene Novena Pilgrimage – July 2015

Once again, Véronique Flayol and I are presenting a wonderful opportunity…. for you to fly to the South of France and spend 10 days getting to know this exceptional friend of Jesus in a very personal way.

Come join us on the 2015 Saint Mary Magdalene Novena Pilgrimage. This year the Novena Pilgrimage is scheduled for July 19 – 29, over the feast of Saint Mary Magdalene (July 22). Véronique and I will meet all Novena pilgrims on Sunday morning, July 19th at MARSEILLE AIRPORT and we will transport them to the Hostellerie-de-la-Sainte-Baume in Plan d’Aups in our tour bus.

Official opening of the feast in 2014 – Fête de Sainte-Marie-Madeleine


2015 Novena Pilgrimage

Saint Mary Magdalene Novena Pilgrimage – July 2015

Sainte-Baume550The Cave of Saint Mary Magdalene is called La Sainte-Baume (holy cave)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHostellerie-de-la-Sainte-Baume

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. It will be our home for the 10 days of the Novena Pilgrimage.

La Sainte-BaumeLa Sainte-Baume

The Novena 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.  Throughout the Novena Pilgrimage we will pray our Novena to Saint Mary Magdalene.

2015 Novena Pilgrimage


On Wednesday, July 22nd we will join the procession from the Hostellerie up to the Cave of La Sainte-Baume with the relics of Saint Mary Magdalene where the Dominicans will celebrate a special Mass.On Sunday, July 26th we will attend the Feast Day Mass at the Basilique Sainte Marie-Madeleine in St. Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume and will then participate in the procession of the Skull of Mary Magdalene in its gold reliquary through the streets of the town.

Relic of Saint Mary Magdalene

Novena Pilgrimage to La Sainte-Baume

Feast Day Mass - Saint Mary Magdalene

Feast Day Procession

2015 Novena Pilgrimage

Novena Pilgrimage 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

2015 Novena Pilgrimage


Along the way we will discover the typical Green Provence landscape, crossing authentic and charming Provençal villages, passing colorful sunflower and lavender fields. We’ll stop at Four des Navettes who for 200 years have been making the specialty “Navette,” a hard biscuit in the shape of a boat,  flavored with orange blossom. We’ll visit a specialty shop that carries the famous “Marseille Soap” that they have been making with olive oil for over 100 years. We’ll stop at Le Café Van Gogh in Arles, which is the restaurant Vincent van Gogh painted in 1888 entitled Le Café de nuit, and see other subjects of his art in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer and that of Paul Cézanne in Aix-en-Provence. We’ll also discuss a modern artist, Sharon Furner, who has spent time in Provence and captured the essence of Provence in many beautiful oil paintings. We’ll go to the fabulous Market in Aix-en-Provence and visit a workshop where they make Santons de Provence.


lavender field

2015 Novena Pilgrimage


Tour Guides – Véronique Flayol and Paula Lawlor


Véronique Flayol is a regional tour guide. She was born in Provence. A descendant of an old Provençal family and deeply attached to her origins, she has been involved for many years in the Association Santo Madaleno. The purpose of this Association is to defend and uphold the traditions of Provence and the cult of St. Mary Magdalene. Every summertime Véronique organizes the Traditional and religious feast of Saint Mary Magdalene in Saint Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume. In 2008 Véronique created her own tour company to share, through her profession, her passion for the Patroness of Provence.

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 is 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 an International Shrine to Saint Mary Magdalene in the United States.

2015 Novena Pilgrimage

Novena to Saint Mary Magdalene & Intro

Novena Book

Mary Magdalene - 550px x 146 px

Mary Magdalene Gift Shop

2012 07 27 - ChinaCover - A LOVE DEVOUT

A Love Devout