Lough Derg’s extraordinary spiritual attraction as Ireland’s oldest place of pilgrimage is revealed in an insightful new documentary to be broadcast on Ireland’s first international channel Irish TV this week.
Ireland’s Pilgrim People will air at 9pm on Thursday, July 17 and can be seen across Ireland, the UK, and Europe on Sky Channel 191, Freesat 400, Eircom’s eVision, free-to-air boxes and online at Irishtv.ie and in the United States on the PBS network
Presenter Malachi Cush joins 68 pilgrims as they land at the Sanctuary of St Patrick on Donegal’s Lough Derg and the hour-long programme records their experiences of three days of prayer, penance and fasting. “Something very powerful has drawn people down through the centuries to this extremely remote location where they deprive themselves of food and sleep in order to reach a deeper understanding of themselves and ordinary life,” said Malachi.
“We show viewers what brings pilgrims to Lough Derg and explore the deep sense of peace, calm and fulfilment that is to be enjoyed on this island which St Patrick himself was called to.”
Travelling barefoot and accompanied by his friend Monsignor Colm Curry, Malachi follows the path set out for all pilgrims on this unique Christian site which has been described as the most robust and challenging pilgrimage in Europe. As he prays and fasts, Malachi give us an insight into the many reasons why people continue to endure the ravages of sleep deprivation, weather exposure and hunger that Lough Derg can promise.
“We talk to people from Ireland, Scotland and America, people of all ages and backgrounds, about what has called them to Lough Derg, repeatedly in many cases.”