Planning aid

In case of questions about pilgrimage


For issues regarding appointment and organisation of the pilgrimage please contact:


Custody of Pilgrimage

Curator of pilgrimage

Kapellplatz 9

84503 Altötting

Phone 08671 / 969242

Fax 08671 / 969260



The pilgrimage director prelate Günther Mandl and administration of the bishop and chapel foundation are available for all issues of the pilgrimage.


Administration of the bishop and chapel foundation

Kapellplatz 4b

84503 Altötting

Phone 08671 / 92420 - 0    (Secretaries office)

Phone 08671 / 92420 - 15  (Infopoint / House Pope Benedikt XVI. – New treasury and pilgrimage museum: Tue - Sun 10.00 a.m. - 4.00 p.m.)

Phone 08671 / 92420 - 22  (Sacristy Holy Chapel)

Phone 08671 / 92420 - 10  (Bishop Administrator)

Fax 08671 / 92420 - 27

Email      (Bishop Administration)

Email   (House Pope Benedikt XVI. – New treasury and pilgrimage museum)



Guest information, room reservations, tourist information

Pilgrimage and traffic office

Kapellplatz 2a

84503 Altötting

Phone 08671 / 5062 - 19

Fax 08671 / 85858



Help for planning a pilgrimage

Requesting informational material

If you are not familiar with your place of pilgrimage, you should get to know it well as future leader of a pilgrimage. This way you will be able to convey the impressions you gained from the place of pilgrimage to your fellow pilgrims later on. Therefore, request comprehensive informational material from the pilgrimage office of the selected place. This should contain history about the place of pilgrimage, an overview of the facilities on location, the service order, and if applicable an overview of hotels and restaurants in the city

Coordinating the date of pilgrimage

All further preparation of a pilgrimage on foot, by bus or bike depend on the coordination of the date of pilgrimage, which should be set first and far enough ahead with the custody of pilgrimage.

Coordination of the services

To do this, you should first set up a service plan for your group, using the received informational material. Now you must decide whether you want to participate in a service at the place of pilgrimage, or want to celebrate an own service with your group.

Participating in a pilgrim’s service

The participation in a fixed service (see service order) is usually possible anytime without problems. Still, register your group at the custody of pilgrimage, as the pilgrim groups present are welcomed at the beginning of the service. This small gesture of welcome will be greatly appreciate by the pilgrims of your group. Registration to participate should be done approx. 10 days prior to your pilgrimage.

Celebrating an own service

If you want to celebrate your own Holy Mass with your group, this usually requires your group to be accompanied by a priest. Due to lack of personnel, it is hardly possible that a priest of Altötting celebrates the mass with your group. Liturgies that you want to celebrate with your group are of course possible with a deacon, a pastoral trainee or layman. In any case however you will require an adequate church room that will be assigned to you by the Custody of pilgrimage according to the circumstances on location. Special wishes for a certain church reps. chapel or a certain time may be stated, but cannot always be fulfilled.

You cannot do it all alone

Contemplate who will prepare your service and which services are required. Lector, altar boys, cantor, organ player, communion helpers. Motivate associations and clubs of your home church to participate in the pilgrimage. Ensure that the texts of the mutual prayers and songs are collected and copied for all pilgrims.

Suggestion: Order two pilgrimage candles yourself or over the administration of the bishop and Holy Chapel. Sacrifice one candle at the place of pilgrimage, and take the other one home with you. This way your pilgrimage has a lasting effect at the place of pilgrimage and at your home church.

The right mixture is important

Most pilgrims enjoy it if you hold an own service and also participate in a general service at the place of pilgrimage. Look at the way of the cross and consider whether also older people are able to walk it. Always plan enough time in which the pilgrims can take care of their personal issues. Indicate the possibilities of being able to receive the sacrament of reconciliation on the holy chapel.

Pilgrimage by bus: Coordination with the bus company

If you are planning a pilgrimage by bus, you should contact an adequate bus company as soon as the date of your pilgrimage is set. Make it clear from the start that you are planning a pilgrimage and not a simple pleasure trip. A good bus company will then provide you with an adequate bus and an accordingly attentive driver that will consider your wishes for the trip and for example refrain from playing loud entertainment music over the speakers. However, playing a cassette about the place of pilgrimage during trip can be helpful. It is also recommended to celebrate your own service on the trip as preparation for the sacrament of reconciliation.

Pilgrimage by foot or bike: The path is important

It is very decisive to ensure an adequate way of travel for a pilgrimage by foot or bike. If possible, forego using main streets, because other traffic will hardly consider your needs. If the usage of main streets is necessary every now and then, pay attention to the applicable traffic regulations and consider informing the responsible police office. A larger group of pilgrims should always be accompanied by a rescue vehicle. Make clear that this is a procession, by taking flags and crosses. Walk or drive the way prior to the pilgrimage with several people and test alternatives. If you need accommodation on the way or want to share a meal, take care of these things as soon as your date of pilgrimage is set.

Why not a little bit of everything?

It is not always easy to find the right form for a pilgrimage. Do I take the bus or do I try to start a pilgrimage by on foot or by bike? Often the combination of all possibilities is the solution. If a small foot pilgrimage and a small bike pilgrimage start off from a church, and then meet up with a bus pilgrimage on the day of main mutual pilgrimage at the place of pilgrimage, these three smaller groups join to form a large one, and the celebration of the Holy Mass together will surely be a highlight of the pilgrimage and an experience for the own church.

Accommodation and Restaurant

As soon as the date of your pilgrimage is set, you should start planning the accommodation and food for your group. Book your accommodation on time, if you are planning to stay at the place of pilgrimage. If you choose the same hotel every time, your group and your host will soon form a relationship that is usually experienced as very pleasurable. If you only want to stay at the place of pilgrimage for a day or half a day, plan a mutual meal. This strengthens the feeling of community.

Press and public relations

Use all options available to announce your pilgrimage in public. Posters, handouts and a proper notice for the paper can be produced easily without much effort thanks to modern office technology today. Surely there is somebody you know that is well-versed on a computer and is able to help you with these tasks. Also consider the church paper of your hometown.

Beginning and end of the pilgrimage: The Statio

Pilgrims usually start out from their home church. Make this origin of your pilgrimage clear by starting the pilgrimage with a short statio in your parish church at home. The parish church at home is the most adequate meeting point at the beginning of the pilgrimage, not the train station, the market place, or the bus station. Meet once more at the parish church after returning from the pilgrimage, so that the memories are carried to the place where your church life takes place at home. This is also a good time to set up the pilgrim’s candle that you brought back.

The journey: Things to do

The journey of a pilgrimage by foot or bike frequently has a few stations. There are always possibilities to enrich the journey with contemplative stops. The other prayer order while walking or driving is usually regulated by the circumstances of the routing. A small handy prayer and song booklet that does not immediately dissolve in case of rain should be created, printed and distributed to the pilgrims. But also bus pilgrims should pay attention that a contemplative phase should commence after a certain time. An aid booklet with ideas with contemporary and youth texts can be loaned in the custody of pilgrimage. Decide beforehand who will prepare the prayer time on the road and also acts as prayer leader on the bus.

Arrival at the place of pilgrimage

We arrive as pilgrims. You should make clear that this is a group pf pilgrims coming to this place. The exterior decoration of such a procession should not be underestimated. Bring flags and crosses, have one of the pilgrims read a prayer loudly and motivate altar boys and maybe the band your hometown to accompany the pilgrimage.

There may also be the option of having your group welcomed with cross, flag and/or band of Altötting and the bells of the main churches of Altötting at a place agreed upon with the custody of pilgrimage. Now you start your pilgrimage day that you have planned and organised so well that the experience will stay with you and your group long after you return home. We wish you a blessed pilgrimage.

Published by the custody of pilgrimage St. Magdalena

Kapellplatz 9

84503 Altötting

Phone 0 86 71/96 92 42

Fax 0 86 71/96 92 60



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