About Our Pilgrimages

Why aren’t your pilgrimages $3,499?
Steve & Janet Ray–with you every step of the way
Desirable and Efficient Itinerary
Authentically Catholic
Top-tier Local Guides
Personal Service
Authentically Catholic
Delicious Meals and Wine
Daily YouTube Videos for your family back home
Comments from Past Pilgrims
Support for Local Christians

Why aren’t your pilgrimages $3,499?

“Cheaper tours can be found on the internet, so why are your prices higher?”

We are not in the business of cheap trips, competing with low budget companies or playing bait-and-switch with hidden costs.

There are many reasons our pilgrimages cost more than cheaper tours. As the old sayings go, “You get what you pay for!” and, “If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”

No cheap, assembly-line pilgrimages here. People who want cheap tours will find plenty available. We will not shortchange you by getting into “low price bidding wars.”

We have a different philosophy: Create and provide the highest quality pilgrimage and intelligent people – those who understand quality and value – will come.

There is a cost to working with the best hotels, best local Catholic guides, fine restaurants, great teaching, solid priests and the best Mass sites, unmatched customer service and moment-by-moment personal interaction with our pilgrims.

We prefer smaller intimate groups and many of our trips are limited to only one bus.

This may be your only chance to visit some these biblical locations so choose wisely — we insure you the best possible experience.

 

Steve & Janet Ray–with you every step of the way

Steve leads all of our pilgrimages and he is NOT your average guide and teacher. He leads with the mind and heart of a true Catholic convert and apologist, bringing the deep meaning of Scriptures to each sacred site that you visit.

Steve interweaves his rich experience and research in biblical history, apologetics & theology to make the Bible and Catholic Faith come alive for pilgrims!

After writing four books for Ignatius Press, Steve spent a decade of his life traveling to the lands of the Bible with a film crew while producing the Footprints of God film series. Since then he has been to the Israel and other Biblical lands over 150 times building trust and friendships at all the locations they will share with you.

You can learn more about the the movies that led to these pilgrimages HERE.

Thorough and Well-paced Itinerary

Some trips move at such a break neck speeds that people are worn out and can’t appreciate what they are experiencing. We have fine-tuned our pilgrimages over the years to see and do a lot – but at a comfortable pace. We don’t set low prices and try to squeeze you into those limitations. Rather, we’ve created excellent, time-tested itineraries for your convenience and then work to get the best values from our suppliers.

It is possible to visit these Biblical lands and miss a lot — seeing and learning only a fraction of what you should experience as a Catholic pilgrim. Or seeing a lot and praying little. There is a delicate balance to a successful pilgrimage.

A pilgrimage should be a marvelous spiritual experience with prayer and daily Mass at sacred sites. Too many tours neglect the spiritual element and rush people in and out of sites and souvenir shops with no time for prayer, Scripture reading, teaching and reflection.

Authentically Catholic

We provide rich historical and cultural experiences but our Catholic faith drives our planning and itineraries. Footprints of God pilgrimages always have at least one dedicated Catholic priest who is fun to be with, devout and faithful to the magisterium. Daily Mass, spiritual direction and available confessions are a part of the package. Praying the Rosary at sites and/or on the bus is a must. Every day begins with prayer. Conversion stories, vocation stories and more are a part of your experience.

Footprints of God pilgrims also have the best English-speaking local Catholic guides. These guides teach about the sites from a local, cultural and historical perspective with great faith. Steve provides the big picture and connects the dots with Scripture and tradition allowing you to learn about your faith as you will on no other pilgrimage.

Top tier local guides

 

Not all guides are created equal.  Can you understand their English?  Are they really believers with a passion for Jesus, Our Lady and the Catholic faith?  Do they love working with people and have a heart for service?

We don’t take anything for granted and interview many before choosing the few. They must pass our rigorous expectations.

For example:
In Rome we work exclusively with a top art historian and popular writer, interviewed by the major TV networks during the election of Pope Francis. She has a delicious sarcasm for anything not faithful to orthodox Catholicism and will spellbind you with her passion, humor, stories and rich knowledge of ancient and Catholic Rome.

In the Holy Land most (over 90%) of the local guides are Muslim or Jewish skeptics, and from the small amount that are actually Catholic we work exclusively with one who is most in demand. He is a true gentleman and scholar who can trace his Christian Nazarene lineage back for centuries. He is a walking encyclopedia with English learned in American universities.

We are just as careful for every destination because you deserve – and will get – the best.

Personal Service

Authentically Catholic

This is what drives us. As converts to the Catholic faith and lovers of the Bible we want our pilgrims to see and experience it all. We love to see conversions of heart and spiritual renewal. Many people have brought lukewarm or non-Catholic family or friends with them. It is always a very positive experience and conversions are a regular occurrence.

Delicious Meals

Buffet lines for breakfast, lunch and dinner??

Our pilgrims will not be stuck in hotel buffet lines all the time! We take you to a sampling of wonderful restaurants in the places we travel. We like to give you many culinary adventures. In Israel, ALL meals are included in the price, even lunches.

In all countries a glass of wine, beer or soda is provided at scheduled dinners. We take you to at least three top-rated local restaurants for dinner.

Daily YouTube videos for your family back home

Steve records and narrates daily videos. Each night he uploads them to YouTube and posts them on his CatholicConvert.com blog. Invite your family and friends back home to join you “virtually” every day by video.

About 5 weeks after you return home you will receive a professionally edited DVD of your trip as a keepsake to share with family, friends or your parish. Keep it alive!!

Comments from past pilgrims

“The food was fantastic everywhere we went. The organization of each little detail was evident every day—and on all levels—the [daily youtube] videos for family to follow at home, the rosaries to touch and pray in all the holy places, our keepsake video of our own trip.”   Kathy

“Our keepsake DVD came last Friday, and I must tell you that Cheryl and I while watching had tears in our eyes with a longing to return. It is so amazing to visit the sites again for second time, and to have it be just as special.”   Jim & Cheryl

Support for Local Christians

Our Footprints of God Pilgrimages support the persecuted Christians in the Holy Land—who make up only about 1.5% of the population. They desperately need our help. With us your money goes to support Christians! We use Christian hotels, Christian restaurants, and patronize Christian shops.

We visit the Bishop of Jerusalem and take up a voluntary donation to support our brothers and sisters in Christ. In all the land we travel, we do all we can to support and encourage the local Christians.

This is the most important thing Americans can do to support the continued Christian presence in the Holy Land. We patronize quality Christian establishments whenever available for their good—and for ours!