Heart of a Priest: Relic Pilgrimage of St. Jean Vianney's Incorrupt Heart to Visit St. Joseph's in Raleigh

The priesthood is the love of the heart of Jesus. When you see a priest, think of our Lord Jesus Christ. - Saint Jean Vianney

The Shrine of Ars in France has entrusted to the Knights of Columbus the major relic of St. Jean Vianney’s incorrupt heart for a national tour in the United States. All are invited to venerate a major relic of the patron of parish priests, whose holiness and integrity is a model for clergy and laity alike.

The Knights of Columbus and the Diocese of Raleigh welcomes this special opportunity to worship in the presence of this major relic of St. Jean Vianney and ask that he intercede for an increase of vocations to diocesan priesthood.

St. Joseph Catholic Church, 2817 Poole Road, Raleigh, NC 27610

Friday, May 24
Veneration 4:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Mass 5:00 PM

Saturday, May 25 
Mass 8:00 AM
Veneration 8:45 AM – 12:00 Noon

“The Office of Vocations invites those who are discerning their calling to come and pray and seek the intercession from the Curé of Ars, Saint John Vianney,” said Reverend Philip M. Tighe, Vocations Director and Director of Seminarian Formation for the Diocese of Raleigh. “He is the patron saint of vocations and a sure intercessor!”

With God’s help, St. Jean Vianney (“John1hj” in English) overcame numerous obstacles and setbacks in answering his priestly calling.  Acutely aware of his own limitations and unworthiness to stand for Christ at His holy altar, he marveled at the power and grace he received through Holy Orders. St. Jean Vianney served in the village of Ars, France, during the first half of the 19th century. Deeply mystical and spiritual, he tirelessly summoned pilgrims and parishioners alike to greater intimacy with Christ and complete reliance on His mercy in the sacrament of reconciliation.

“My God,” St. Jean Vianney often prayed, “if my tongue cannot say in every moment that I love You, I want my heart to repeat it to You as often as I draw breath.”

Relics are holy objects that are associated with saints who now live in God’s presence. Veneration of the earthly remains of saints is a spiritual practice dating back to biblical times and the Church’s earliest years. Reference to an early form of relics can be found in the New Testament, when a woman was healed by touching the hem of Jesus’ garment (Matthew 9:18-26) and when cloths touched by St. Paul were used to heal the sick and drive out demons (Acts 19:12).

Saintly relics are venerated in recognition of the fact that God has worked through a saint and that an object associated with a saint is holy and can help lead people to God. The healing power of relics comes from God alone and never from the object. A more developed use of relics began during the widespread persecution of the early Church, when the faithful would retrieve the bones of martyrs and place them under the altar for Mass. To this day, all Catholic churches place first-class relics in altar stones.

Please visit www.kofc.org/vianney for information on the Knights of Columbus St. Jean Vianney Relic Pilgrimage. For more information about vocations in the Diocese of Raleigh, please call the Office of Vocations at (919) 821-9723 or visit www.ncpriest.org.