In the ancient world, Rome was the quintessential “power player.” Her architecture, infrastructure, and polity were all used as models for other civilizations as the scope of the world grew. If we look at the world of today, we must look back at the world of yesterday and acknowledge that in a variety of respects, “all roads lead to Rome.” It’s no wonder that Rome found itself at the center of the early church and the Catholic church of today.
A missions trip to Italy encompasses the best of history, culture, and adventure. Follow in the footsteps of St. Francis of Assisi and discover the story of one man’s quest to renew the church. Visit some of the greatest works of art in the history of mankind or wander through lovely Italian fields while breathing in Tuscany air. Take a journey that leads you into a culture that has roots that go back over 2700 years. This is a pilgrimage that will speak to the heart of all who need some Italian in their soul.
- Experience the words of Paul’s letter to the Romans in a whole new way.
- Spend time in prayer and contemplation at Vatican City.
- Visit the sites that tell the story of St. Francis of Assisi.
- Visit some of the most ancient sites in the entire world.
- Immerse yourself in the sights, sounds, tastes, and smells if one of the most charming areas in all of Europe.
- Explore the surrounding region on foot, or on a bicycle, or on horseback.
- Travel past the tourists into the areas where local people are in need of a helping hand.
- Partner with a local organization to serve children or the elderly.
- Spend time in service to a local church or community of religious.
Every Wonder Voyage itinerary (mission trip and/or pilgrimage) is personalized to the desires, direction and personality of each group. This itinerary is only a description of the kind of journey we can create for your unique team.
- Day 1 – Benvenuti a Roma
Welcome to the City of the Seven Hills, the ancient world capital, Rome. Our week will be full of both the ancient and the modern, with the wonders of both the Roman and Christian worlds. The adventure begins right away as we visit the Church of Domine Quo Vadis, where Christ spoke to Peter as he fled Rome. Later, we will descend into the catacombs beneath Rome where we will learn about centuries of martyrs who risked their lives in their refusal to deny Christ.
- Day 2 – Ancient Wonders
Our first full day in Rome will test our walking shoes. We begin at the world renowned Colosseum and hear the ancient story of Telemachus, the last Christian martyr. Wandering the streets of this buzzing city, we will walk through history to the Roman Forum and the Spanish Steps. At dayʼs end we will toss coins into Trevi Fountain in hopes that we might someday return to the Eternal City.
- Day 3 – Holy Spaces
Today our focus will turn from ancient Roman to early Christian history. As we walk in the steps of many pilgrims before us, we will ponder the ideas of faith, and sacrifice. We will begin at Santa Crice in Gerusalemme. This pilgrimʼs basilica houses the chapel of Helen, mother of Emperor Constantine and a woman of devout faith; additionally, the basilica contains many relics from the Holy Land. Next, we will visit the Scala Santa, the Holy Stairs climbed by Jesus on his way to that fateful meeting with Pontius Pilate. Pilgrims ascend these ancient steps on their knees in silence and prayer. The basilica di San Pietro in Vincoli houses the chains worn by Peter when he was imprisoned in Rome and Jerusalem.
- Day 4 – Outside the Walls
Our journey is at its midway point and it is time to escape the bustling city and venture outside the walls of Rome. Perhaps a trip to the Ruins of Pompeii and a trek along the stunning coastline to Positano and Amalfi is just what you might like. Or maybe a day-trip to the village of Orvieto, a beautiful town perched precariously on a hillside is more to your taste. Either way, we will experience Italy in a totally different way as we venture into the countryside.
- Day 5 – The Country within the City
Vatican City is actually a country with its own with laws, diplomats, police etc. We will journey to that country today without ever leaving the city of Rome. From St. Peterʼs Square, to the enormous Basilica, to the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel, one can really understand how important Vatican City is in the history of the Christian Church. As we leave Vatican City and re-enter Rome we will visit the Pantheon, one of the most amazing ancient Roman temples.
- Day 6 – All in a Day
Rome was neither built in a day or week, nor can it be completely explored in a week. Today we will have the opportunity to break into smaller groups to explore those places of special interest. Maybe one of the many museums – the Borghese, the Capitlolini, or the Nazionale di Roma piques your interest. Or maybe some of Romeʼs fabulous shopping is what interests you. Whatever it may be, today is the day we will make that happen.
- Day 7- Arrivederci
Our week in Rome is drawing to a close. We have traveled through history, walking in the footsteps of plebeians, pilgrims, and ordinary people. We have heard stories to inspire and challenge us. Now we head back home to continue our own journeys with renewed faith and a sense of our past.
Legacy in Rome, Italy
- *This is the base cost of the trip. Your cost may differ depending on housing, activities, etc.