Akron’s St. Sebastian parish and Wooster’s St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception are among five sites designated by Catholic Diocese of Cleveland Bishop Richard G. Lennon as places of pilgrimage on weekends between May 18 and Sept. 8.
Lennon is encouraging parishioners in the eight-county diocese to visit the sacred places for prayer and reflection to deepen their faith. The initiative, called Pilgrimage 2013 — a Year of Faith Journey, is part of a diocesan effort to create opportunities for spiritual growth during the Roman Catholic Church’s Year of Faith.
The Year of Faith, which was declared by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, began on Oct. 11, the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council and the 20th anniversary of the Catechism of the Roman Catholic Church. During the Year of Faith, Catholics are being asked to study and reflect on the documents of Vatican II and the Catechism as a way to strengthen their faith.
During the local pilgrimage, parishioners will travel to four parish sites — St. Sebastian, 476 Mull Ave., Akron; St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception, 527 Beall Ave., Wooster; St. Mary, 242 N. State St. Painesville, and St. Mary, 320 Middle Ave., Elyria — and end their journey at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist, 1007 Superior Ave. E, Cleveland.
Pilgrims will receive a “Pilgrim Passport” at their first stop. Those who bring a passport that has been stamped at each parish to the Cathedral will be given a certificate of completion. The first 1,200 pilgrims to finish the journey will receive a commemorative Year of Faith medal that has been blessed by the Pope Emeritus.
Each pilgrimage site will be open 3 to 7 p.m. Saturdays and 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sundays.
More information about the pilgrimage can be found at www.welcomecatholics.com. The diocese covers Summit, Medina, Wayne, Cuyahoga, Lorain, Lake, Geauga and Ashland counties.
In other religion news:
Akron Pregnancy Services — 105 E. Market St., Akron. 9 a.m. May 18. The annual walk will be held with registration at 9 a.m. It is called Intercede 4 Life and pledges made will support the ministry in downtown Akron. The walk will begin at 10 a.m. at Summit Street and East Market Street. Participants will head to Cascade Plaza for a time of worship, testimonies and prayer. The vision for the year is “rebuilding the wall of righteousness” which is a message for every generation. 330-434-2221.
Bethel Temple Assembly of God — 711 25th St. NW, Canton. 11:30 a.m. today. The women’s ministry is hosting luncheon for ladies, A New Beginning, in the Graber Family Life Center. Tickets $10. 330-454-3058.
The Chapel, Green Campus — 1800 Raber Road, Green. 10 a.m. Friday. Abundant Living 55+ Christian fellowship and lunch in the Atrium. Host is the Rev. Kevin Seager. Concert with John Schmid. Ages 55 and up welcome to attend. 330-315-5508.
First Universalist Church of Westfield Center — 6 Park Circle, Westfield Center. 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 18. Annual Plant Sale and Bazaar. Large variety of plants, flowers and herbs available. Vendor booths will feature plastic containers, crafts, jewelry and chocolates. Also, bake sale and rummage sale.
Goodyear Heights United Methodist Church — 1690 Hillside Terrace, Akron. 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 18. Rummage sale. Light lunch available.
Greater Bethel Baptist Church — 404 S. Arlington St., Akron. 8 a.m. Sunday. The Rev. Kenneth W. Paramore, pastor of Christ Centered Church, will speak as part of celebration of the 12th pastoral anniversary of the Rev. Melford J. Elliott. The Rev. Richard Robinson, associate minister of Christ Centered Church, will speak at the 11 a.m. service. On Friday at 7 p.m., the Rev. Benny Williams and New Millenium Baptist Church ministry will be guests.
Manchester United Methodist Church — 5625 Manchester Road, New Franklin. 6 to 9:30 p.m. Friday. Gospel Bluegrass Jam on the third Friday of each month. Bring your favorite covered dish to share for dinner at 7:30 p.m. Donations welcome. 330-882-4818.
Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church — 1241 Grant St., Akron. 9 a.m. to noon May 18. The women of the church will host their annual Mother-Daughter Breakfast at the East Akron Community House, 550 S. Arlington St. Theme is Changed, With a Renewed Mind. Speaker is the Rev. Stacy Moss. Attire semiformal. Cost $7 in advance. Call 330-724-8163.
Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church — 1241 Grant St., Akron. 11 a.m. May 19. Celebrating the 87th Annual Women’s Day. Speakers will be the Rev. Candace Thomas, the Rev. Jeannetta McCormick and the Rev. Dynasti Malone. 330-724-8163.
South Arlington United Methodist Church — 790 S. Arlington St., Akron. 9 to 11 a.m. Friday. Open public food pantry. From 4:30 to 7 p.m., an all-you-can-eat spaghetti dinner will be served. Choice of marinara, alfredo or meat sauces. Includes salad and garlic bread. Cost is $7. On May 18 from 11 a.m. to noon, Stork’s Nest will be hosted by the sisters of Zeta Phi Beta for expectant young mothers. There will be a discussion of the warning signs of labor. Free baby clothes, prenatal education and refreshments. 330-724-1334.
Eastern Road Church of God — 2600 Eastern Road, Rittman. 7 p.m. Wednesday. Duane Frame, a southern gospel artist from Ravenna, will perform at Spring Revival. 330-927-0448.
Queen of Heaven Catholic Church — 1800 Steese Road, Green. 7 to 9 p.m. May 18. Banjo player Mike Gentry and the River City Jazz Band will entertain at Roberts Hall in the Parish Life Center. Gentry is a member of the National Banjo Hall of Fame and performed at Disney World and on Mississippi riverboats for 15 years. The event is sponsored by Young at Heart Club, whose members will serve cookies, punch and coffee during intermission. Tickets $10 per person. 330-896-2345.
Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church — 1241 Grant St., Akron. 7 p.m. Friday. Friday Nite Inferno, featuring the Rev. Marcellus Winters. A night of praise and worship sponsored by the church’s youth and young adult women. Featuring gospel skits, rappers, music and dancers. 330-724-8163.
Interfaith Caregivers — at Acme Community Room, 3235 Manchester Road, Coventry Township. 1 to 3:30 p.m. May 18. Effective Caregiving II, a free workshop, will be held. It is a training event for volunteer caregiving for current and prospective caregivers and family members. Speakers include Michael Ciccolini, who will discuss wills and powers of attorney, and Ursula Neal and Jodi Peterson, who will speak on safety for activities of daily living. Registration at 12:45 p.m. To register or for more information, contact Sandy Alexander at 330-922-1900. Reservations due by Tuesday.
Renew — at Tangier, 532 W. Market St, Akron. 11:30 a.m. Thursday. Bob Unruh will be the monthly luncheon speaker. His topic will be Trials and Blank Checks. Unruh is president of Design Construction, a real estate development and building company in Green. He was married for 31 years to the late Brenda Burnham Unruh, former judge of Summit County Court of Common Pleas. Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org. Cost is $15 at the door and includes lunch. No charge for first-time guests, but reservations required. Renew is a nonprofit organization with the mission to connect with business professionals striving to serve God and others in the marketplace.
St. Hilary Church — 2750 W. Market St., Fairlawn. Noon Thursday. The Health & Wellness Ministry Lunch and Learn Series 2013 will conclude for the season with Umbilical Cord Blood, the Life Saving Gift. It will be presented by Marcie Finney, a nurse with Cleveland Cord Blood Bank. A $5 donation will buy a sack lunch. Reservations required by Tuesday at 330-867-1055.
Zion Lutheran Church — 2233 Abbeyville Road, Valley City. 6:30 to 8 p.m. Monday. Speaker Rich Melheim will host a free family event called Faith5, aimed at instilling faith in children. It includes stand-up comedy, practical parenting advice and encouragement. Visit www.zionvc.org for more information.
The deadline for Religion Notes is noon Tuesday. Items must be in writing. Please fax information to 330-996-3033, email it to email@example.com or send it to Religion, Akron Beacon Journal, 44 E. Exchange St., Akron, OH 44309.