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Due to continued Covid restrictions for group gatherings, this year's Pilgrimage journey will look very different from the past.  Students will have the opportunity to participate in their grade cohorts on either Tuesday, October 26th (Grades 10 and 12) or Wednesday, October 27th (Grades 9 and 11).  Each cohort will take turns gathering in Dillon Hall, then heading out for a short walk along the canal before returning to Dillon Hall for a prayer service with Fr. Jim Mulligan CSC.  Athough shorter than the usual experience, this change allows the entire school community to participate.

This year's theme is "No More Turning Away".  Students will be reminded about the meaning of pilgrimage and how we live in solidarity with those suffering in other parts of the world.  When we are aware of the needs of others, our faith reminds us that we cannot turn away from it.  We must take action to respond in some way.  Our pilgrimage is one specific way we can do that.


All Notre Dame students, staff, alumni and others are invited to participate in this year's Pilgrimage, however, due to the Covid-19 Pandemic restrictions, only students and staff can walk together and participate in the prayer services.  Unfortunately, we cannot allow outside attendees to walk with these grades or attend one of the prayer services after the walk.  Alternatively, the Grade 12 celebration will include Eucharist and will be recorded and posted on-line for the entire Notre Dame and extended community to view on Sunday, October 31st.  Alumni and others are welcomed and encouraged to raise funds for the Pilgrimage (and/or to donate to the Pilgrimage) through our online 'Peer to Peer' Campaign.

For the first time ever, our Pilgrimage will be paperless with registration, donations and teh issuing of tax receipts all being done through the canadahelps.org platform.  Participants can click the "Register" button on our school website (notredamecollege.ca).  The online registration process provides participants with a personal "fundraising page" with a personal link which can be shared with family and friends, and makes keeping track of donations quick and easy.  Don't have a particular participant you wish to sponsor?  No problem!  General donations can be made by clicking the "Donate" button featured prominently at notredamecollege.ca.  Please not that those wishing to donate do NOT need to sponsor a specific participant.  If they wish to make a general donation to the Pilgrimage, they may do so.  The links to "Register" as a participant or to "Donate" to the Pilgrimage will be featured prominently on the Notre Dame College School website (notredamecollege.ca).  Additionally, tax receipts will be e-mailed directly to those who donate vie the Canada Helps website.

Click here for instructions on how to register for this year's Pilgrimage (students, staff, others who plan to fundraise).  Once you open the instructions, there is a QR code that you may scan which will take you to the same url or page as clicking the "Register" button in the graphic above.

Click here for instructions on how to donate to this year's Pilgrimage.  Once you open the instructions, there is a QR code that you may scan which will take you to the same url or page as clicking the "Donate" button in the graphic above.

For additional information or questions you may have, please e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


History of the Pilgrimage

In the Spring of 1975, Holy Cross Father and former Notre Dame student and teacher Jim Mulligan experienced his own Pilgrimage to Chartres while studying in Paris, France.  On this holy journey, he reflected on the rich faith tradition of a pilgrimage as a prayerful walk to a holy place. He thought it would be incredible for a high school community like Notre Dame to begin its own Pilgrimage as walk of solidarity with those suffering from injustice in other parts of the world.  Six years earlier in his Grade 10 French class, while discussing the concept of ‘Tiers Monde’ (Third World), he and his students had already begun the tradition of ‘Starvathons’ where participants would obtain pledges for fasting.  Monies raised supported development work in what was then known as the Third World.  

The concept of the Starvathon and Pilgrimage were combined in the Fall of 1976 as Notre Dame’s 1st annual Pilgrimage for the Third World.  In late October of each year following, the entire Notre Dame College School community (students, teachers, parents and alumni) has joined together to walk in solidarity with those suffering in other parts of the world. There are many ways we put our faith into action at Notre Dame, but our annual Pilgrimage is a significant focal point of our school year. It is an opportunity to learn about and respond to issues of injustice in the developing world.

The symbol of our Pilgrimage is the broken world – a world broken apart by greed, injustice and indifference.  We walk in love and solidarity, contributing to the common good.  Our hope is that by putting our faith into action, by putting our feet to the gospel, we are contributing to a unified world, not a broken one.  

Who We Support

Participants collect pledges to support 3 separate organizations: Yancana Huasy, a therapy centre for physically and developmentally challenged young adults in Lima Peru associated with the Holy Cross Fathers (http://yancanahuasy.org.pe/), Dominican Canadian Community Development Group (DCCD) (founded by Notre Dame alumni https://www.globalnpo.org/CA/Welland/165371410253899/The-Dominican-Canadian-Community-Development-Group) and the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace (https://www.devp.org/en/aboutus/identity) .  


    • 25% of Funds raised: Yancana Huasy is a centre for children with special needs in Lima, Peru founded by the Congregation of Holy Cross. 
    • 25% of Funds raised: Dominican Canadian Community Development Group (DCCD) is a grassroots not-for-profit charitable organization founded by Notre Dame Alumni. It uses a collaborative approach to development projects in the Dominican Republic.
    • 50% of Funds raised: Development and Peace is the international development organization of the Catholic Church in Canada and Canadian member of Caritas Internationalis.  It supports partners in the Global South who promote alternatives to unfair social, political and economic structures.


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