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A Transformative Pilgrimage to Italy

Posted on 7/31/2018 12:18:56 PM by Mignon Toppino

This June, I was blessed with the opportunity to go on an 11-day Italy Pilgrimage, a trip that Cabrini University Campus Ministry offered in celebration of the 100th anniversary of Mother Cabrini's death. The experiences I had on this Pilgrimage opened my heart up to great growth and learning of who I am and who my Heavenly Father is.

Before attending Cabrini University, I attended Cabrini High School in New Orleans, LA. So, I grew up learning from and about Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini, who we call Mother Cabrini. Going to Mother Cabrini’s birthplace in Italy was truly the highlight of the trip for me. Being able to be in the presence of the relic of Mother Cabrini’s heart was such an awakening moment. It’s quite difficult for me to really form the right words to describe the amount of joy, peace, love, and beauty I felt in those moments. I do know I have never felt more sure of God’s love and mercy.

Mignon with statue and relic of Mother Cabrini

To explain to you fully what this whole experience meant to me and what I learned from it, I must explain to you what season of life I was in before the trip. I was in a season of great struggle with loving myself, seeing the face of Christ in myself, and hearing and understanding God’s voice. To say that this trip was simply a great trip with beautiful opportunities would not be completely honest because for me this trip was transformative. Every day since the trip, I have learned a little more, I have started to love myself a little bit more, and by God’s grace this beauty will not stop.

This trip was so transformative for me because it taught me the power of intentionality. Diving deeper into Mother Cabrini’s story I learned how she was a very intentional woman. I have learned the minute I wake up every day I have to be intentional on how I love. I must wake up, intentionally say to myself that I love and accept myself and that I am a radiant and beautiful daughter of God. I must intentionally remember who I am, and what my Heavenly Father calls women of faith to do, which is to love and serve their brothers and sisters. I owe all of who I am and all of my life experiences to my Heavenly Father, for every day, despite my sins and faults, He chooses to love me and desires a deep and intimate relationship with me.

I am unbelievably blessed but not only by the love of Christ but for the bond and relationship I have made with Mother Cabrini over the years. I can tell you for a fact that without Mother Cabrini’s life of love, faith, and bravery my life would not be what it is today.

Much love and Prayers,

Mignon Toppino