Client Letters 2013

page banner
  • From: Diane Fasselius
  • Sent: Friday, December 20, 2013
  • To: Liz Shea
  • Subject: Portugal and Italy pilgrimage with Fr. James Starbuck 2013 200


I truly do not know where to begin to explain how incredibly beautiful, touching, and rewarding the experience
of the Fatima, Assisi, Rome Pilgrimage with Father Starbuck has been for me.

From the very beginning I entered the journey with an open heart believing God was guiding this journey and He
truly was with me and all of us throughout as there were soooo many God-instances that had unspeakable impact
on my heart. I cannot believe the tremendous “gift” received in having Alessandro Pietro Gaj as our Tour Guide,
truly a Divinely inspired man and what an inspiration for those of us lucky enough to be guided by him during these
days walking these holy grounds. Thank you sooo much. Bless him……. If I ever book another Pilgrimage, I will
surely wish for him to be the Tour Guide. Was not a job for him,,,,,was a vocation he was called to do. He was
always going above and beyond for all of us.

The tour guides in Italy were awesome, both ladies, can’t remember their names, one for Assisi and Siena (maybe Maria?) and another for Rome (maybe Tatiana?) …….incredible…..both very gifted, committed and dedicated to making our pilgrimage and the information the very best. Loved them both. Let them know. Guide in Lisbon also awesome….Phillip, I believe, very knowledgeable…kind and accamodating..Bus drivers both great.

As I think about going on vacation in the future, it is hard to imagine doing anything but a Pilgrimage, and I can’t imagine even considering anyone but 206, seriously!!! I have nothing to even cause pause when thinking about the experience. I realize it was off season, the crowds were “low”, which made it much nicer and easier to navigate, which really enhanced the spiritual aspect of the trip, so that really causes “pause” when I think about the timing of future pilgrimages. But I cannot say enough good things about the entire experience. First Class all the way.

Travel, food, accomadations, guides, pre-information (only thing would have been nice to have names of fellow pilgrims with final documents before leaving), flights, time allowed between flights-no rush, all awesome and beyond expectation! If there was anything that would have been nice, would have been to have a little time (maybe 15-20 minutes built in to schedule) to visit gift shops at some of shrines visited for sacred artifacts, gifts. Don’t need much time, but each place may have had booklets explaining about the particular shrine visited (was hard to capture all information described by tour guide) to purchase a descriptive book about the shrine/basilica, etc. Or, if Tour would/could have provided brief information about sites visited, that would have helped. Hard to take in all that was experienced and retain much of it, so when we got home, we felt like we had “lost” much of what was experienced because of not having “printed or written” information about all that was visited. Retention of what was heard from Tour Guide was minimal, and difficult to take notes while also listening. Maybe, a recording of the tour guides
information…..probably not appropriate, but they know so much. Just wanted to capture and hold onto all that we were able to experience.

It was quite obvious that the 206 Tour group, you people behind desks working out the details and the people on the front lines working with the Pilgrims are all doing God’s work, helping people travel closer toward God. Bless all of you for your work. We appreciate you and your efforts.

I will look no further when considering future travel and I have no desire to travel but as a Pilgrim. That is because you at 206 have made being a Pilgrim walking toward God an indescribably rewarding experience. Thank you.

God Bless all of you, and Merry Christmas!!!

Diane Fasselius

  • From: Steve and Carol Ham
  • Sent: Tuesday, December 10, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Spiritual fruit of our pilgrimmage 20132


We participated in the tour to Fatima, Lourdes, etc, with Fr Calloway last June. What a marvelous experience and spiritual journey. In addition to all the blessings during the trip we have “discovered” the rosary as a result of our trip. We generally recited the rosary daily during the tour, usually on the bus during transfers. We were aware of the rosary but never really “got it”.

As a result of the trip we have been saying the rosary daily now for about six months, and what spiritual fruit we are receiving as a result of this practice! This gift has been perhaps the most important and lasting blessing of our fabulous trip with 206 Tours.

Thank you & God bless you all in this important work & ministry.

Steve & Carol Ham
Keswick, Va.


  • From: Sisler, Susan (DBHDS)
  • Sent: Monday, December 2, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Medjugorje: November 12-20, 2013 20133

Dear Rosalie,

We just returned from our pilgrimage to Medjugorje (November 12- 20). We stayed at Hotel Dubrovnik and Father Ramon Manrique was our spiritual director.

The trip was awesome! Our two priests were Fr, Bob Puhlman and Fr. Ramon. They were exceptional and very attending. It felt like they were there for our spiritual needs, not for theirs!

And of course, Slavenka was just as wonderful as she always is as a guide for Medjugorje. She is spiritual, (her faith is obvious), caring, totally knowledgeable and skilled as our guide.

One thing I think that could be communicated stronger is to bring an FM radio to Medjugorje to listen to the Croatian Mass in the evening. I didn’t think about it, and although I read the recommendations, I don’t remember reading about bringing a radio to hear the Mass in English. But I will next time. I will go back next year. This time, I will bring my son, David.

Thank you so much. I feel totally safe with 206 Tours and Slavenka.

Thank you so much. God bless.

Susan L. Sisler, MS, LPC

  • From: Juan Molina
  • Sent: Monday, December 2, 2013
  • To: Yaritza Rodriguez
  • Subject: Peregrinacion a La Tierra Santa con Padre Walter 20134

Hola Yaritza,

Regresamos muy bien de nuestra peregrinacion y muy felices, fue Fantastica !!! Me gusto mucho las oraciones en las mananas y tardes y la Santa Eucaristia con los Sacerdotes que nos acompanaron en nuestra peregrinacion. Igualmente agradezco nos elegieran un guia Catolico, ademas muy responsable y mucho conocimiento. (califico 10/10 su excelente trabajo). Gracias de nuevo estare en contacto para continuar haciendo peregrinaciones con 206tours y con el Instituto del Verbo Encarnado.


Maria Isabel Molina

  • From: Coco Marcello
  • Sent: Monday, December 2, 2013
  • To: Melissa Mulligan
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Lourdes: October 25-29, 2013 20135

I just wanted to let you all know thAt our trip to Lourdes 10/25/13-10/29/13 was fantastic and I would recommend 206 tours to anyone! Thanks for being so organized and efficient on the front end:it allayed alot of anxiety.Your patience in responding to fairly last minute questions/issues was deeply appreciated. A special thanks to Rinda who found a way to accomodate us on rather short notice and did so with such graciousness!


Coco Marcello

  • From: Fr. David
  • Sent: Monday, November 25, 2013
  • To: Yaritza Rodriguez
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land | Nov 13-24, 2013 20136

Dear Yaritza,

Thank you so very much for a wonderful pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Our trip was absolutely wonderful and all that 206 Tours did made this a great opportunity for education and prayer. I will be sending a full letter with details about our journey (all positive) to thank you for your efforts. Our entire group had nothing but positives about our hotels, travels, and tour guide (and driver). Again, many thanks and I will be using 206 Tours again in the future. May God bless you for your aid in preparing for great pilgrimages around the world.

Fr. David

  • From: Anne Hockett
  • Sent: Monday, November 25, 2013
  • To: Yaritza Rodriguez
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land with Fr. David Foradori | Nov 13-24, 2013 20137

Words cannot express how we felt about our pilgrimage. It was phenomenal! I learned so much from Sami, our guide. He was constantly looking out for our group, and he was insightful and knowledgable. To say it was a great trip is an understatement. Our bus driver was equally great, getting us to our destinations safely and In a timely manner.
You,Yaritza, were very helpful with the information that we requested, and were valuable in helping us prepare for our trip.

I would feel very comfortable going on another 206 tour. God Bless everyone that worked behind the scenes, preparing for our tour. Everything was PERFECT!

Thank You,
Ken and Anna Hockett

  • From: Bobbie
  • Sent: Monday, November 25, 2013
  • To: Yaritza Rodriguez
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land with Fr. David Foradori | Nov 13-24, 2013 20138

Dear Yaritza,

You beat me to the punch. I was actually going to e-mail you last evening to "thank you" for securing room on the flight (with my late booking) with the rest of the group, but ran out of steam to finish putting everything away etc.

The Pilgrimage was wonderful. Now, when reading the Bible or hearing a particular Gospel, I will visualize where it took place and tie things together..

Our guide, Sami, was so knowledgeable and insightful. I certainly DID feel as though I was in a Holy Place. My eyes were opened to so many things and I now understand why people stay there and put up with so much. I will try to remember the people there in my daily prayers

Our driver was excellent as well. I appreciated how skillfully he was able to get that bus in and out of those tight places.

I don’t have any complaints. Every day was full and well organized. I was surprised that I never once felt uneasy or threatened by military, as they were practically non existent….and when we did encounter them, they were all very nice.

I have a hunch, Fr. Foradori may share our video with you…. as the Tech person from St. Michael’s School (Kristina McConnell) was taking pictures and videoing constantly.

Usually when I come back from a trip and friends ask "would you go back"….. I tell them how much I enjoyed everything, but there are too many other places to see……but I do hope to get back to the Holy Land one day.

Everyone participated in our daily Masses at least once (Reading, Distributing Communion or being a Cantor….and I believe for John Michael, our 12 year old, who served daily for Fr. David, this was a special blessing.

Having Gabriel (I believe he is in his late 80’s) come on board our last day to express his appreciation to us was so special. You could hear a pin drop as he was speaking to us. The gifts were appreciated as well, but not necessary.

Thank you again Yaritza. Sorry, I can’t tell you JUST one thing special… it was ALL so very special.


  • From: Pat Neesen
  • Sent: Sunday, November 24, 2013
  • To: Rinda Kanidinc
  • Subject: Israel Pilgrimage 20139

Just wanted to say the trip to Israel was all we expected. Lovely place! Can’t wait to go back with Fathers Eric and Fernando who had a lot to do with the trip being a success, along with flawless planning.

Pat Neesen

  • From: Angelita Zamora
  • Sent: Saturday, November 23, 2013
  • To: Milanka Lachman; Rinda Kanidinc; Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Holy Land Pilgrimage 201310

Dear Milanka, Rinda & Rosalie,
I wanted to let you know that this trip was one of the Best, from the spiritual director ,coordinator, tour guide & the group itself. Father Carlos was the overseer of the group ‘coz he is tall & can see everybody in the midst of lots of pilgrims. He had best homilies related to the place we were, it enriched me spiritually. Dr. Brenda Pulido was an excellent coordinator, she saw to it that everybody is accounted for, communicated thru emails probably hundreds times. She was very organized, punctual & caring. Regarding the tour guide-Rimon Makhlouf , I would rate him A+++, he is very knowledgeable! funny & has very good public relation. I was impressed with him ‘coz, he knows lots of people in the area. I told him you are like a politician. It was a blessed trip & enjoyable because we are all friends to begin with. Thanks a lot. GOD BLESS.

Angelita G. Zamora

  • From: Fr. Patrick
  • Sent: Thursday, November 21, 2013
  • To: Rinda Kanidinc
  • Subject: Shrines of France 201311

Hello Rinda,

Hope all is well with you. I have just arrived back from a wonderful 206 Tour to the shrines of France, Spain & Portugal. It was a great pleasure to work with the tour guide Jesus, he was fantastic! I really enjoyed working with the pilgrims, and I enjoyed visiting the various shrines. It was truly a great blessing for me to be there. Should you need a spiritual director for next year, I would be honored to serve as a spiritual director for another Tours 206 pilgrimage. Thank you for considering me for another pilgrimage. May God Bless you.

Fr. Patrick

  • From: JOHN PIRRO
  • Sent: Thursday, November 21, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Medjugorje: November 12-20, 2013 201312

Hi Rosalie,

As you know this is the Fifth tour Pilgrimage we have taken with 206 and it was the best spiritually.
I consider this not a pilgrimage but a retreat. The first words this morning from Ann was "we could of used a few days more".

The Holy Spirit is in Medjugore 24/7.

Thank you,
John & Ann Pirro

  • From: Ellie Porlares
  • Sent: Thursday, November 21, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Medjugorje: November 12-17, 2013 201313

Hi Rosalie,

Yes Im back home safe & still savoring the fullness in all aspects of that recent pilgrimage. Although the plane trip is always a struggle for me physically, it is compensated with excellent assistance of 206 tours. A very warm welcome at the airport, comfortable 21/2 hour ride from Split to Medjugorie. A very energetic tour guide Slavenka welcoming at the hotel, she’s also very systematic. Accommodation, I’m so very satisfied, housekeeping is really doing their job. Location was perfect. Generally speaking I didn’t see any flaw.

Spiritually?This pilgrimage is a multienergy vitamin takenIt enhances it nurtures, it enlightensMore so it makes me yearn & look forward to another pilgrimage in the future, only with 206 Tours. By the way I have to mention this, I just love my group. The night before our departure we had a group sharing & I met & spent quality time with real people.That climb to the Crnica and cross at Podbrdo hill was really great. Mother Mary greeted peace to the visionaries. It was the feeling I experienced up there.

Vatican gave you an award, really you are deserving of it. Thanks again 206 Tours, Love You All!!!!!!!

Ellie Porlares

  • From: Brenda
  • Sent: Wednesday, November 20, 2013
  • To: Milanka Lachman; Rinda Kanidinc; Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land, Nov. 10-19, 2013 with Fr. Carlos Melocoton 201314

Dear Milanka, Rinda and Rosalie,

We just got back home 12 hours ago. I just can’t wait to share this with all of you. We were so blessed as a small group of 22 pilgrims, since we are all friends to start with, except for Javier (Peru) and Ortud (Austria) Vallejos, who are co-parishioners of one couple, but they blended so quickly with everyone, and we became one big, happy family. The trans-Atlantic trip was uneventful. The WV group met the New York, Nevada and Ohio pilgrims at Frankfurt, and from there, we proceeded to Tel Aviv, where our guide, Rimon Makhlouf welcomed us with this: “Welcome to your spiritual home!” Right then, I felt that this was going to be a different special journey. And surely it was! Rimon is a most knowledgeable, caring and devout Catholic. He and Javier Valdivieso of Spain are my two most favorite tour guides. Rimon asked all of us to share the webpage for all his youtube videos on the Holy Land to our family and friends, and encourage them to share it with others, especially those who are unable to go on a pilgrimage.

The driver, Fares Tawili, is an excellent and friendly driver.

If you did not know already that it is his first time to be a Spiritual Director of a pilgrimage, you will not be able to guess that it was the case for Fr. Carlos Melocoton. Thank you, Fr. Carlos for agreeing to lead us. I was touched by his homilies and felt that he was so inspired by the Holy Spirit. Every day was a very spiritual day for him. You could see it on his face and you could feel it in your heart.

Our bus ride started with a morning prayer and blessing, and we took turns in reciting the Holy Rosary. One of us served as an altar serve and we also took turns in doing the reading during the Mass and in being Eucharistic Ministers.

The daily Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, celebrated under the trees, inside a cave or inside a very simple chapel or a beautiful church, was always the special highlight of the day. The schedule for the Via Dolorosa, followed by the Mass and visits at the Holy Sepulchre was the most emotional day!

For 6 couples who renewed their vows at Cana, the whole day was so special and we all celebrated with them.

The one night stay at Seasons Hotel in Netanya, by the Mediterranean Sea, the two nights at the Caesar Hotel in Tiberias, by the Sea of Galilee and the 5 nights at The Olive Tree in Jerusalem were all enjoyable. Eggplant dishes and desserts at The Olive Tree were my favorites. Thank you for the free lunches, which were a delightful experience each time.

We had 2 shopping stops in Bethlehem mainly for religious souvenirs and one in Jericho forHebron glassware, ceramics and dried fruits. Having lunch at the Carmelite Convent in Mt. Carmel gave us the opportunity to buy many scapulars from the Sisters.

Everyone was happy and thankful to receive the beautiful certificate of pilgrimage to the Holy Land and the Jerusalem Cross.

This is my third 206 tours pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and it’s the best! I always picked early November, and this time, there seems to be more pilgrims. We had excellent weather. I firmly believe that if a person can take only one pilgrimage, it should be to the Holy Land. My husband Fred joined me last time. After every pilgrimage, you feel renewed, inspired and humbled.

Of the 22 pilgrims, only 3 have been to the Holy Land before. The 206 tour package sent before our departure contained extra informational books and prayers, and that’s very much appreciated.

Thank you, my Savior and Lord Jesus Christ! Thank you to our Blessed Mother!

Thank you, Milanka and 206 tours, Fr. Carlos, Rimon, Fares and all my co-pilgrims!

I hope that those of you who have not been to the Holy Land will have the opportunity to go on this most wonderful pilgrimage.

Love, joy and peace to all,


  • From: Maureen O'Brien
  • Sent: Tuesday, November 19, 2013
  • To: Stefanie Meyer
  • Subject: Holy Land Nov 4 - 14, 2013 201315

Hi Stefanie,

We had a most wonderful pilgrimage to the Holy Land! Everything was perfect and our guide was amazing. He explained so much to us, many things most of us hadn’t heard, about the customs of the day, how some traditions began, important pieces of history, he was just great. Everyone is still talking about what a great experience they had. I knew it would be, 206 is the BEST! I want to say thank you to you and Milanka for all your hard work in making our experience so memorable. I look forward to our next pilgrimage in June!

God bless!


  • From: Joe & Mel Miranda
  • Sent: Sunday, November 17, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Guadalupe & Mexico City: November 6-11, 2013 201316

Hi Rosalie,

Our Pilgrimage to Guadalupe & Mexico City was more than we can ask for. We had Msr John Sabia as our spiritual director who enriched our soul with his beautiful homilies and Elvyra, our guide, who was guided by the Holy Spirit to bring us to sites that we need to know and see. The highlight of the pilgrimage was spending, the last day, the whole day at the Basilica where we spent more time with our Mother a the shrine and also to witness the different Indian tribes dancing and praising God.

I would summarized this by saying this was a perfect trip for us and once again our next pilgrimage will be with 206 Tours.

God Bless you all,

Joe & Mel Miranda

  • From: Darlene Rutkowski
  • Sent: Thursday, November 14, 2013
  • To: sales
  • Subject: Happy Birthday from 206 Tours | Santiago De Compostela , Fatima, Spain and Lourdes | November 5-16, 2013 201317

To 206 tours staff,

Thank you for the birthday recognition this evening. It was a surprise. The cake was delicious. The tour is great. Michael drove us around in a very safe manner. Jesus is doing a wonderful job as our tour guide.


Darlene Rutkowski

  • From: Fr. Jeff
  • Sent: Monday, November 11, 2013
  • To: Linda Antonelle
  • Subject: Our recent Pilgrimage to Italy 201318

Linda and Liz,

I would like to thank you both so very much for all of your time, hard work and patience in helping to plan and bring to fruition our parish pilgrimage to Italy. The entire pilgrimage was so well planned and organized that everyone truly enjoyed themselves and the experiences that we had together. Our tour guide Gaia was incredible! Not only was she friendly, well organized and knowledgeable about each place that we visited, she was a joy to be around and a great help to a few of our more “challenging” pilgrims who warmed up to her as we all did. She is a wonderful and excellent asset to your company and if I take a group back to Italy on another pilgrimage I hope that we are lucky enough to be able to have her again! Additionally, the tour guides we had in each city were fantastic. They were knowledgeable, friendly and shared so much with us that we were amazed at each place they took us. Gaia did a wonderful job in organizing places for us to celebrate Mass at. Some of the chapels and places that we celebrated Mass together were incredible! I do not know how she was able to do it all and keep it all organized, but she was fantastic!! All of us enjoyed the pilgrimage and I heard more than once, “where are we going next”. So thank you so much for all of your hard work and I look forward to planning our next parish pilgrimage with you.

Fr. Jeff

  • From: Betty Heick
  • Sent: Friday, November 8, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain, Lourdes & Paris: October 6-18, 2013 201319

Dear Rosalie,

We enjoyed our pilgrimage immensely! There is not one facet of it that I would want changed. Our guide, Jesus made our pilgrimage very special. We were able to have Mass every day and most of them were our own private Mass. Jesus took the time to explain everything so well and was very good at making this the best possible pilgrimage. We enjoyed the fact that he is Catholic and participated in everything with us, including Mass. He was very accommodating with the menus, for those of us that had food allergies, he arranged it so that replacement food was available. He was very knowledgeable in every place that we went and made it a pilgrimage to remember.

Our hotels were very enjoyable, clean and beautiful!! We loved the fact that we were within walking distance of the Shrines at both Fatima and Lourdes, making it possible for us to enjoy it even more.

Thank you 206 Tours for making this a wonderful pilgrimage!!

Betty Heick
Group Coordinator

  • From: Robin Gunkel
  • Sent: Tuesday, November 5, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo; Rinda Kanidinc; Stefanie Meyer
  • Subject: D'Amico - Individual Travel to Italy | October 18- November 4, 2013 201320

Good Afternoon Ladies:
I just spoke with my client, Deb D’Amico – she returned just yesterday from her Italy tour with 206 Tours and I wanted to share her feedback of the trip with you.

She would HIGHLY recommend 206 Tours – every single night they either received a phone call in their hotel room or a note stating where and when their driver/guide would meet them the next morning. There was never a question – they were informed and contacted EVERY day. The tours were amazing – it was a trip of a lifetime and they saw so much. The driver they had was so friendly and very comfortable to be with him.

Rome: was wonderful – the hotel was two blocks from Republic Square and 10 min. from St. Mary Major Church – there was a lot to walk around and see.

Assisi: Gorgeous little town, the hotel was very small but did have a couch, desk and chair. Tiny narrow bathroom but it was fine. The woman guide they had was awesome.

Florence: Big huge hotel, beautiful location, great walking distance to many things, room and bath were very small – no A/C and it was very hot – unseasonably warm for this time of year. They were given a fan to use which helped.
If they had to do it again they would upgrade their hotel rooms categories if possible for something larger in that same hotel.

They thought the tour was phenomenal and beyond imaginable with the organization – the guides/drivers would quickly organize groups of people by language, handed their headset and they were off. There was no standing around or wasting of time. The coordination of everything was amazing and the guides were very attentive. My clients loved the fact that they were with fellow Catholics who enjoyed the same things. They met many wonderful people.
The last-minutes change of the flights from Dec 3rd to the 4th worked perfectly and my clients were so happy you could do that for them.

I, too, would like to thank you for all of your assistance as this was my very first land tour. I learned a lot and would love book another 206 Tour again. Thank you.

Robin M. Gunkel

  • From: A Bruce & Suzanne McKay
  • Sent: Tuesday, November 5, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land: October 6-15, 2013 201321

Dear Ms. DeFilippo,

It is our pleasure to provide feedback for our pilgrimage to the Holy Land from October 6 to October 15, 2013. My wife and I decided to have you include the individual airfare in the total cost of the trip. This trip was the most significant, informative and emotionally moving one we have taken in years.

Although the schedule was jam-packed with several visits to spiritual sites, our guide, Habib Butros, provided thorough descriptions of each site’s religious significance. Habib was knowledgeable, took the time to understand each individual’s needs, and provided responsive reactions to questions and concerns. He gave us specific suggestions and cautions for our interactions with the local patrons. Father Brennan is an exceptional priest. His knowledge, sense of humor concern for all us participants and we learned much from his homilies and in our individual discussions with him. The driver of our bus was also excellent.

We were quite satisfied with the entire trip, and also appreciated the guidelines provided for tipping, and other material we received beforehand. Thank you for a wonderful pilgrimage.

A Bruce & Suzanne McKay

  • From: Mary Benusa
  • Sent: Monday, November 4, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Classic Italy: October 15-24, 2013 201322

We are back to our normal, everyday lives. However we will never forget the fabulous vacation we had in Italy. It was just like every picture I’ve ever seen, every book I’ve read, and every travel show on TV. The tour was so well planned, and Irene, our guide was like a friend of our family. We connected with the other people on the tour, and exchanged emails & addresses. I just looked at some of our photos yesterday with family, and they don’t do justice to the experience that we had. My compliments & appreciation are extended to you and your co-workers who planned this trip for us. We would definitely recommend 206 tours.

Thank you so much,

Ron & Mary

  • From: Charles & Hortensia Mayer
  • Sent: Sunday, November 3, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Fr. Joe Batcheldor | Spain | Sep/Oct 2013 2013 201

Dear Amanda,

My husband and I would like to say “Thank you” for our wonderful trip with 206. This was our first tour with your company, and our expectations were met 101%. Javier our guide was a treasure, funny and well informed about the country. The local guides were also well informed. The city of Toledo was the icing on the cake, beautiful and with some much history. If we are to take another tour, we won’t hesitate to go with 206. Our spiritual guide, Father Joe Batcheldor was the kind of guide that our group needed. Once again, kudos to Javier, and also to the bus driver Carlos. I am enclosing a picture of my husband and I, in front of Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia.

Charles & Hortensia Mayer

  • From: Raida
  • Sent: Wednesday, October 30, 2013
  • To: sales
  • Subject: Best shrine of France 201323

The trip was great. Enjoyed every moment of it.
Matilda was very knowledgeable and tried to explain lots of things to us.
She really did a good job.
Our driver Pedro was very good and careful for our safety.
He also kept the bus clean I really enjoyed the trip spiritually and also as a tourist.
I definitely will go again with your company for a pilgrimage.


  • From: Mary Czyzycki
  • Sent: Monday, October 28, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Poland: September 29- October 7, 2013 201324

Dear Rosalie,

From the very first phone conversation I had with you I knew this would be a special pilgrimage and it was. The complete packet came as you said with everything detailed. Our flights were well organized with plenty of time for changing planes.The hotels were the best I have ever stayed in in Europe. No complaints on the food either. The bus driver and all of our guides were excellent. Iam not a shopper so was happy with not so much of that ( the shopping time in Zakapone was a little long for me though). Spiritually,Czestochowa was the best for me.

I would take a 206 pilgrimage again and certainly recommend one to my friends.

Yours truly,


  • From: Joseph Gioello
  • Sent: Monday, October 28, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: El Camino – Santiago de Compostela: October 14-24, 2013 2013 203


I had actually intended to drop an email to the owner of your company because I was so impressed with how the trip went. The pilgrimage went flawlessly. In fact when our guide, Javier Gomes asked us for feedback, I truly could think of nothing to say. I find this kind of interesting, because Process Improvements (how to do things better) was an area I was associated with when I served in the navy. Javier was very impressive. He was very prepared, knowledgeable, and always had a very positive attitude. I have posted some pictures on facebook and have mentioned to several of the people I have been to Medjugorje with (with 206/ Fr. Charles Mangano) that 206 “really puts out an excellent product”.

Regards and God Bless,

CWO3 (RET) Joe Gioello

  • From: Rev. Hernandez
  • Sent: Monday, October 28, 2013
  • To: Rinda Kanidinc
  • Subject: Thanks 201325

Dear Rinda,
Thank God I got home safe and sound last night. Thank you very much for the great opportunity to serve as Spiritual Director for the recent pilgrimage to the Shrines of Italy (Oct. 14-27, 2013) and the extension pilgrimage to Florence and Venice. I am very grateful as I was so blessed to say Masses at the Shrines and to spiritually guide the pilgrims who were with us. They were a great group. The pilgrimage was both refreshing and spiritually enriching for me as a priest. The tour guide, the drivers, and all the local guides were all great. This is the third pilgrimage with 206 Tours and I will highly recommend the tour company because you do an excellent and professional job. I am very impressed because it is easy to work with you.

May God and the Blessed Mother Mary bless you,

Fr. Hernández, Pastor

  • From: Fr. Jim
  • Sent: Sunday, October 27, 2013
  • To: sales
  • Subject: Happy Birthday from 206 Tours 201327

Hello to all at 206 Tours!
I had a very fitting way to celebrate my 76th birthday. I was flying to New Mexico from Santiago de Compostela where I was able to complete the El Camino. It was one of those things I wanted to do before I got too old!
Thanks, again, for your greetings.

Fr. Jim

  • From: Fr. Jim
  • Sent: Sunday, October 27, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to El Camino: October 14-24, 2013 201326

Dear Rosalie and all at 206 Tours,

In every respect, the recent pilgrimage on the El Camino was superb. Our guide, Javier Gomez made it all come together. He is a first rate leader and friend. If not for him, I am not sure the group would have all completed the long walk. David, our bus driver, also served as chief cheerleader as each of us came into sight at the different check points and lunch stops. Javier and David work so well as a team.

The hotels were very welcome as we completed each day’s trek. The meals were too good! I especially appreciated the arrangements made for our daily Masses. Each place was prepared for our arrival and everything was ready for our celebrations.

Javier referred often to the group as "family." That became obvious by the second day. Nobody knew anyone of the other travelers except for spouses, and yet, we jelled so well. Javier, again, is largely responsible for bringing us together. At the same time, people coming from different places came to the El Camino with good motivations and were determined to make the best of this pilgrimage.

Santiago, the name of my patron saint, was very special. It was refreshing to see many others whom we met on the trail after they also had arrived in the city of St. James.

On the way home, I wrote many pages of notes, primarily spiritual in tone. I still do not know how the reality and beauty of the El Camino can be adequately explained to others since each traveler is in a different place spiritually at the beginning and at the end of the journey. It is so personal and deeply felt by each person. One just has to go and experience the El Camino. Going with 206 Tours is a good way to achieve this and to come to know the blessings that so many have shared in over centuries.

Blessings to all for the background information and all the attention to the details for which 206 is known. A very special thanks to Javier for his loving care for every one of us. He is a blessing!

Fr Jim

  • From: Mary Meehan
  • Sent: Saturday, October 26, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Best Shrines of France: October 11-22, 2013 201328

Hello Rosalie,
It is my pleasure to say that I really have only positive feedback (and one suggestion) to offer you! I have never been on a trip like this before and was very satisfied from beginning to end. I selected your tour group from the internet without having any personal recommendations and while on my trip, learned from others who have traveled with different companies that 206 was their personal favorite! That certainly affirmed my choice! There were many aspects of the trip that I appreciated but here are my top 10:

1. Having Mass celebrated every day by a priest (Fr. William) who has great passion and enthusiasm for celebrating the Eucharist.

2. Having a Tour Guide (Matilda) who was very professional…keeping us on track while be accommodating simultaneously. That is not easy and she did a fabulous job!

3. Feeling safe while we were traveling from stop to stop. (Pedro was a fantastic driver!) I didn’t realize how much bus time there would be and the accommodations were very comfortable.

4. Looking back at how the tour was structured, I SO appreciated the immersion of the spiritual experience at Lourdes being our first stop and eventually leading to Paris, which brought us back into the hustle and bustle of life.

5. Enjoying a good night’s rest in a VERY COMFORTABLE AND CLEAN room.

6. Enjoying delicious breakfasts and dinners daily.

7. I liked having some amount of free time to explore, try local cuisine, have additional time at the sacred places we visited, etc.

8. Having a local tour guide was also an added bonus. I do think that offering DVD’s on the bus that reflect the lives of the saints we are going to visit or show more detailed information about the sites we stop at would be good.

9. It was nice to pray together on the bus and before dinner each day with our group.

10. I never had to think or even worry about the details of the trip….the transfers, luggage, reservations at restaurants, hotels, etc., which left me so free to concentrate on the experience.

Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart! This has truly been a spiritually enriching experience for me. I realize that this is your job, but I think it must also be a calling. To be in a position to lead others into a deeper relationship with God, by providing these experiences is a gift, and I pray that your company continues to convey that. I certainly wouldn’t hesitate to use (or recommend) 206 in the future!

In thanksgiving for the journey,
Mary Meehan

  • From: Al Reddy
  • Sent: Friday, October 25, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Best Shrines of France: October 11-22, 2013 201329

The pilgrimage was both refreshing and enriching. The guide, Matilda, driver Pedro and Father William, were all great and I would love to travel with them again. Getting 14 adults to get up, to meals and to the bus on time is like herding cats. Matilda was professional, polite and a great help. I thought the trip might be too long when I booked it but I was wrong. There was so much to see that it went by very quickly. Every stop was terrific BUT, we needed much more time at Chartres. I could have skipped Taize to spend more time at Chartres. The only problem I had was hearing some of the local guides. Some were soft spoken and some were in noisy areas. I would have paid more to use whisperers with all the local guides. This is the third trip with 206 for my wife and I (once together and 2 separate pilgrimages). We will use you again as soon as we save enough for another one.

Thank You very much,
Al Reddy

  • From: Silloo Madan
  • Sent: Friday, October 25, 2013
  • To: Milanka Lachman
  • Subject: My Pilgrimage experience on The Shrines of Italy Oct 14th _ Oct 23rd 2013 201330

My dear Milanka,

Wow! What a special Pilgrimage…..I was personally very moved both emotionally and spiritually by my whole experience and wanted to share it with you, even though it is a bit long!

Firstly, I could not imagine how you could possibly keep the cost so low with all the amazing places we went to, along with the experienced Guides who were so filled with the historical knowledge of each place we visited, the driver Giovanni who kept us safe with his expert driving skills, and finally the hotels that offered us much comfort and good food to sustain us after the long sight seeing and driving. You know I would never go any other Pilgrimage unless it was with 206 Tours!!

This Pilgrimage was special to me and my dear friend Roshan Sethi, since it is the Year of Faith declared by our dear Pope Emeritus Benedict X1V, and we saw Rome particularly for the first time as Catholics. Both Roshan and I flew many times as Air Hostesses with Air India and stayed in Rome. But, for the first time, after my conversion experience in Medjugorje in 2000, I got this chance to really see Rome and have an audience with our Holy Father Pope Francis looking at everything through the eyes of being a Catholic. I also had to make this Pilgrimage in thanksgiving for graces and favors granted to my family by St Padre Pio and St Michael, the Arch Angel.

I also knew that it would be a pilgrimage of penance and prayer as well for me.From the start in Rome where our group of 43 were granted a special permission to have Mass celebrated at the Main Altar at St Peter’s where only Cardinals are allowed to celebrate Mass, was a special grace given to us by Our Lord and Blessed Mother on the Feast of ST Margaret Mary of Alacoque. Thereafter, so many graces kept pouring on me at every sacred place we visited. In Monte Casino, I fell in prayer at the Tomb of St Benedict and St Scholastica, and prayed for my own twin brother who is at present in a nursing home far away in India.

I could go on with all the other graces and blessings I received in Assisi, San Giovanni Rotando and Siena, but that is for another day when, please God we do finally get to meet!!

There was much to say and thank both our Guide Vincenzo who took over from Gaya as her little daughter fell ill from the first day, as well as our driver Giovanni, whose safe and expert driving, needs to be highly commended. Vincenzo’s knowledge and history of each place was amazing and inspiring, and his care over 43 people daily was an effort to be commended in itself.

Again, dear friend in Christ, be assured, I prayed at each sacred place for you and your family and the continued blessings 206 Tours brings to us PIlgrims traveling the footsteps towards God.

Love, prayers and blessings always,

In Jesus and Mary,


  • From: Fr. William
  • Sent: Thursday, October 24, 2013
  • To: Melissa Mulligan; Rosalie DeFilippo; Rinda Kanidinc
  • Subject: Thank you 201331

I really appreciate that you considered me to be the Spiritual Director for the Pilgrimage to the Marian Shrines in Europe. It was unbelievable to celebrate Mass at such amazing locations full with history, faith, and devotion. Really, I do not have the words to express my sincere appreciation for this opportunity. On my account, it was a moment in which my ministry as a priest was enriched, as well a good way to help others to be closer to our Lord and His Blessed Mother. I hope that you will keep me in mind for future Pilgrimages as well, I will continue to keep you in my prayers.

With my sincere gratitude to you and your agency,

Fr. William

  • From: Shirley Fleitz
  • Sent: Thursday, October 24, 2013
  • To: Chris Wright
  • Subject: Holy Land Pilgrimage 2013 204

Awesome! More than I could have imagined. To think that we walked where Jesus walked. I have been on 2 other 206 tours which were wonderful, and this was the best one yet. Our guide Usama was so knowledgeable about all of the areas we traveled. He was able to answer any question and welcomed them. The bus driver was very skilled at driving. He also had bottles of water on the bus we could purchase for $1. We didn’t need currency other than US dollars for the entire trip. The hotel in Tiberias was fine and the Dan Jerusalem was wonderful with views overlooking the city. Having all 3 meals provided each day was a great benefit for this trip. Bishop Medley is a wonderful leader; always there for you. He had Mass every day for us in the Holyland. At the wedding chapel in Cana, the Bishop renewed the marriage vows of the couples on the trip . That was very special. When I hear the readings in church about places in the Holyland, I can now visualize exactly where they are. I have many memories from this trip that will last a lifetime. I have attached a picture of our group on the steps of the Holy Sepulchre and also a picture of the Sea of Galilee.

Thank you 206 tours for making this trip possible.

Shirley Fleitz

  • From: Sarah LeBlanc
  • Sent: Wednesday, October 23, 2013
  • To: Rinda Kanidinc
  • Subject: Shrines of Italy 201332

Good Afternoon,
I wanted to share what a wonderful experience I had in Italy. From the food to the destinations, everything was thought through so that we would have a great experience. Our tour guide, Gaia, was phenomenal. She cared about our experience and really catered to our requests. My only disappointment was that it didn’t last longer. Thank you for a wonderful experience!

Sarah LeBlanc

  • From: Peggy Merman
  • Sent: Tuesday, October 22, 2013
  • To: Chris Wright
  • Subject: Feedback Holy Land with Bishop William Medley 201333

Hi Chris,

Our tour was great, the guide was exceptional. The food was good everywhere we went, too much food as usual. The Kibbutz was charming and the accommodations at the Dan Jerusalem were first rate.

We had a wonderful time and met some very nice travel companions. We are all hoping to travel together again sometime soon. My husband’s Mother has been telling people this trip was 150% times better than any other trip she has taken before.

The only problem we had were our seats on the flights to and from Tel Aviv were not together. My husband was able to trade seats on the flight to Tel Aviv and sit next to me. On the flight home no one would trade with us, so we sat apart. I would have thought since we were among the first to sign up we would have been able to sit together. It was disappointing to say the least.

The other problem was United Airlines did not circulate water as other airlines have done on past flights, especially with the length of the flights I would have expected it. Having recently traveled to China, US Airways had a flight attendant walking the aisles the whole flight with a pitcher of water and cups. On the long flights it is so important to stay hydrated. They did have a station in the back near the flight attendants station, with water and snacks, but it was not convenient and to me seemed hidden and almost secret. (I found it on the return flight after waiting in line for the Toilet.) The attendants were abrupt and not very friendly mostly they acted like we were a bother. I know the flights were all full, but put a smile on your face and try not to be rude.

All that said, we will definitely travel with 206 Tours again in the future.

Peggy Merman

  • From: Joanne M Campbell
  • Sent: Friday, October 18, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Pat MacIsaac & Ginney Behn | Medjugorje | Oct 2013 201334

Hi Amanda:

The trip was wonderful. All and more than I expected it to be. We had Zeljka Rozic as a guide. She was prenominal.
She had been in Medjugorje since the beginning. Six in the group was great. Between Pat, Ginney and You the trip was absolutely wonderful.

I wondered how such a small group would work. It was perfect.

Thank you for everything.
Joanne Campbell

  • From: Dorothy Hesson
  • Sent: Thursday, October 17, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land: October 6-15, 2013 201335

Dear Rosalie,

Bob and I just returned from our tour to Israel. We are still a little weary, but in a good way.

This tour exceeded my expectations in every way! The accommodations at the Dan hotels were fabulous. Every person we encountered there was very kind and agreeable for us. The food at these places, as well as the sites for lunches, was beyond any buffet that *I* have experienced. I am so very happy that I had these experiences.

Our group was 22 persons. Was it the prayers of each pilgrim prior to the journey, or was it the work of the Holy Spirit on the trip? I don’t know. All in our group bonded quickly into a little "family" — we cared for and assisted each other, we joked with each other, we enjoyed the company of the others. This is for my husband and me our first trip with a group, so I didn’t know what to expect, but it was lovely and enriching Finally, 206 Tours outdid themselves with our driver, Mahmoud, and our guide, Habib. Habib is knowledgeable of the history and geography, and the stories of each of the sites. We were edified by his explanations. I cannot say enough good about Habib except that I would wish that any Christian spend some time with him. We will never forget.

Thank you for your work and for this fantastic tour!

Kindest regards,

  • From: Joan Hardin
  • Sent: Wednesday, October 16, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Fr. Joe Batcheldor | Spain | Sep 30-Oct 9, 2013 2013 205


it was a wonderful trip! Our tour guide was one of the best I had ever met. He was so caring and in charge of the group, but very informative at the same time. He was a delight. The hotels were top-notched, and the staff very pleasant. The meals were great everywhere. I enjoyed the tours but longed for more free time to enjoy the culture and the people. On a scale of 1=10, it was a 10 for sure. I am enclosing a photo of our group in front of Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia. I am holding our local newspaper so they will be publishing the photo soon.

Thanks again for all of your preparation and planning that made our trip the best. Joan Hardin. Kentucky.

Joan Hardin

  • From: Leann Kaufenberg
  • Sent: Tuesday, October 15, 2013
  • To: Yaritza Rodriguez
  • Subject: Compliments on our tour 201336


Bruce and I recently completed our pilgrimage to Portugal, Spain and France. Our tour was Sept. 18-27th with Father Joseph Fink. We had a wonderful trip. We want you to know what a fantastic tour guide Alexandro is. He did everything possible to make our trip enjoyable and enriching to our faith. He is very professional and yet so open and personable. He was gracious to everyone in our group, taking special care to ensure that our eldest pilgrim could participate in almost every activity. He is knowledgeable about the cities we visited and his joy in this work was very evident. Our highest praise to this employee. We would love to travel with him again in the future.
Blessings in all of your work.

Leann & Bruce Kaufenberg

  • From: Donna Snider
  • Sent: Saturday, October 12, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Fr. Joe Batcheldor | Spain | Sep 30-Oct 9, 2013 2013 206

Dear Amanda,

We had a wonderful time in Spain. The hotels were very nice and in great locations. We loved our trips to Toledo and Montserrat. The trip to Santiago de Compestello was long, but worth it.

This is our third or fourth trip with your company and we have always had great results.

Our guides have always been very good-but Javier really stood out. He was informative, entertaining and made a point of including everyone. He went out of his way to make us all feel comfortable. We had one scary incident when we came back to Madrid one evening and found ourselves in the middle of a demonstration. 15,000 demonstrators and car after car of special policia. Javier got us safely back to our hotel and made us feel totally at ease.

He encouraged me to walk a section of the Camino, when I was not sure that I could do it. He was careful to stay just in front of me so that I didn’t feel rushed but I didn’t feel I was lagging behind. Such a gentleman!

I did not get his e-mail address but hopefully he will get a great “pat on the back” from his superiors.
We took hundreds of pictures, and I have included one.

Thanks again,
Donna and George Snider

  • From: Ruth Newquist
  • Sent: Friday, October 11, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Greece with Greek Isle Cruise: September 27- October 7, 2013 201338

The trip was very well done. Nice small group….12….including Father Eric. Excellent, above average guide, Joannes, on the mainland in Greece. He was outstanding. Hotels and food all very good. The hotel in Athens should shampoo the carpet more often. Bus driver, Dennis, excellent and friendly.

Ruth Newquist

  • From: michele lloren
  • Sent: Friday, October 11, 2013
  • To: Piernha Marc
  • Subject: Lourdes-Paris-Rome 201337


In behalf of my parent, I would like to extend my heartfelt gratitude to the team of 206 Tours for providing an excellent pilgrimage.The hotel accommodation was clean with excellent service. Special thanks to our wonderful tour guide, Javier. He was very organized and always on top of things. . He help make it a very memorable vacation.

Lloren Family

  • From: Mary Ellen Stackel
  • Sent: Thursday, October 10, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Fr. Batcheldor | Spain | Sep 30-Oct 9, 2013 201339

Amanda I just wanted to tell you how wonderful our trip was. Everything went perfectly. Javier was the perfect guide. Gave great history lessons. Father was the spiritual link we needed. And kept us on focus. He was amazing.
The group accepted us with open arms. I would go on and on.

Mary Ellen

  • From: Susan Wilkinson
  • Sent: Thursday, October 10, 2013
  • To: Yaritza Rodriguez
  • Subject: RE: Welcome Back from Medjugorje | September 26-October 4 201340

It was a fantastic pilgrimage!

Our group organizer was Daniel Cleary. I have gone to Medjugore so many times with Dan and feel he is wonderful to travel with. He has every one’s best interest at heart.

We had a wonderful priest, Fr. Romain who was a very Holy and Accommodating for us all.

An last, But not LEAST, was our guide-Dragan! He is the tops in my book!

Very thoughtful and of course, knowledgeable about the Apparitions, and Visionaries, etc. But the most I liked about him, he made it fun with his many jokes and great personality!

I have been there 9 times and this was one of the best trips.

Thanks so much ! Our flights and accommodations at Marinko’s was great as well. Food over the top!!!

Thanks again!


  • From: Lyn Dorenzo
  • Sent: Thursday, October 10, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Greece with Greek Isle Cruise: September 27- October 7, 2013 201341

Dear Rosalie and staff,

Bless all of you! You far exceeded my expectations! The hotels were awesome; the tour guides fabulous. Father Eric is unique in a very positive way. My only suggestion would be to emphasize as much as possible that there is strenuous walking on this pilgrimage. All in all it was awesome!

Lyn Dorenzo

  • From: Barry Elliott
  • Sent: Tuesday, October 8, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Thank you 201342

Dear Rosalie,
Since I will not be back in Australia until later this month I thought that it would be more timely and appropriate to send a note of thanks to yourself and your team. All arrangements went as planned, albeit arrival Warsaw was in the middle of a security alert and thus immigration took some 90mins, apart from that no problems. Both tour guide throughout and driver could not have been more thoughtful or obliging, the various guides at particular locations were very knowledgable. Our priestly tour director was a delight and am thankful that he was always available to all. Hopefully, I will have the resources and time to make pilgrimage again with 206tours.

Yours sincerely
Barry Elliott
Sydney . Australia

  • From: Robin Mayo
  • Sent: Sunday, September 29, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to El Camino: September 13-23, 2013 201343


The El Camino tour was wonderful! The logistics were well done, length of daily walk, rest stops, even the weather was very well arranged. I will enthusiastically recommend 206 tours to all friends and family and I look forward to future 206 tours.
Before anything else, I must commend our guide, Jesus. He worked tirelessly to meet everyone’s needs and wants. He was always friendly and available, even helping with meal service to ensure our pleasant experience. I hope that I can be fortunate enough to encounter him in the future as a guide!

The meals exceeded my expectations from you web information. For me, “lunch” is like a sandwich and fruit but what we received was a real dinner with multiple local dishes to sample and an abundance of wine. It was a good thing we were walking or this would have been a real weight gain.

The only misstep was in the bed arrangement of some of the overnight accommodations. First let me say that all accommodations were clean and pleasant, better than many USA “inns”. I did expect a queen or larger bed but at 4 of the sites we were in side-by-side twin beds. One of the sites relocated us when there was a table between the beds. At the other sites, we were too tired to complain. It appears that the inns thought we were siblings rather than a married couple, so I think that our reservation wasn’t clear enough especially with the language change. Perhaps for reservations we need to use “R. Greg Mayo” instead of “Robin Mayo” to reduce this confusion. I will remind you of this problem on our next tour.

From a spiritually perspective, the tour was outstanding. The walking with other pilgrims allowed reflection on my own life and the life of others. It’s easy to forget how blessed one is until you have the chance to share life experiences with others. The chance to step away from our daily routines and immerse oneself into an open, sharing group is not something that will soon be forgotten. The walking gave us a common bond to build new friendships.

I attached some photos. Feel free to use, if you wish.

Robin Mayo

  • From: Joyce Simoes
  • Sent: Tuesday, September 24, 2013
  • To: Piernha Marc
  • Subject: Mexico City & Cancun 201344

We are grateful to our Mother Mary for her intercession for our family for our pilgrim to Our Lady of Guadalupe. Thanks to 206 Tours for helping us to spiritually & safely making our pilgrimage a successful and a memorable one. Our special thanks to Ms. Rosalie DeFilippo for all her patience and promptness to all our emails in planning our pilgrim.

We were happy with the trip all the way. The 2 people with us the driver Mario and Elvira were very nice and made us feel at home and were the right people to be there. They were very courteous and took a lot of care with us. I was touched with Elvira coming all the way to the airport to bid us goodbye. The transport was nice and comfortable.

Also they cared for our safety giving us good direction at all times. I would not hesitate to refer both of them again, especially considering all the stories that I have heard of Mexico. Our trip was protected by Our Mother Mary and we were brought home safely. We encourage people to come to Our Lady of Guadalupe. We felt safe at all times. We strictly followed all the guidelines given by 206 Tours and Elvira.

I could be in Guadalupe for more time. But I think 2 full days is too much I may be wrong. Also I regret very much that we missed a beautiful location which was the visit to the holy corpse of Bl. Sebastiao De Apperico in Pueblo. If this was mentioned to me earlier I would have made sure that I got to visit the place.

The food in the Mexico city hotel could have been little better customized especially when children are involved with little different request and different tastes, or prefer to keep A la carte menu with a budget, in that way you leave the flexibility to your clients to choose the meal.

We would suggest having a Spanish and English translation of the Mass book as you are really lost when wonderful priests are saying the Mass with so much of zeal and fervor. Also prepare people for some common Spanish words. These would be simply great memoirs for those in North America. It would have been great if at least one Mass was celebrated in the English language.

I was very encouraged and felt blest that your organization was very Catholic focused. Keep up the work and hope to connect with you’ll for a trip in the near future.

The driver in Cancun, Alfonso, was also nice. You chose a good hotel which is walking distance to a catholic church and a convenience store. My eyes could not believe that we had a church so close by in Cancun. We had Mass in Cancun and a visit to the Blessed sacrament. The food and drinks were way too much. Too bad I am not one of those drinkers.

We got home with sweet memories. My skin on my shoulders burnt (due my own carelessness) .We do not get this in Canada. As our river is never warm enough and we get a lot of fresh water around the coast.

To recall: Mt.6:33 Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness. All the rest will be added unto you. Keep working for the Lord first and may you succeed in your endeavors and we do not hesitate to recommend 206 Tours, as you’ll are trustworthy and were true to everything that you said you would offer us.

I could not ask more from the Patroness of Americas who made this trip possible and for taking care and guiding my family during our pilgrim journey on this earth.

Best Wishes and thanks again….

Dick and Joyce

P.S: please forward our appreciation, prayers & thanks to Mario and Elvira……

  • From: Nick Poeppelman
  • Sent: Tuesday, September 24, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land: September 8-17, 2013 201345


I loved the pilgrimage. Some of the sites really “touched” me and I do feel spiritually enriched. I want to especially express that Sami Tawel, our guide, was EXCELLENT. His passion, knowledge, etc was topnotch. Make sure you use him for other groups so they can have the same experience. Also, it was a pleasure to have Father Damien as the spiritual leader. He helped provide insight not just from Jesus’ time but also from current times.
I will definitely recommend 206tours to others.
Thanks for the wonderful pilgrimage.


  • From: Colleen Samson
  • Sent: Monday, September 23, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Medjugorje & Dubrovnik | August 18-30, 2013 201349

Dear Rosalie,

It is with a heart of gratitude that I would like to share my thoughts with you:
206 tours organized our tour to Medjugorje during the month of August and I wish to thank you for a job well done. Father Fineo, our Spiritual Director, along with our small group were graced to have Slavenka for our tour guide. What an exceptional guide she truly was! Though it was my second trip to Medjugorje, Slavenka was so thorough, so brilliant, so funny and extremely kind that she was loved by our entire group and is a great asset to your company. Though there were some details that were not completed when we arrived in Dubrovnik, it was soon remedied and we were made to feel right at home. We were so impressed with your tour that we would not hesitate to utilize your services again and share with others the excellence of your company. So, thank you again for making our trip so memorable, I’m sure I am speaking for the group when I say, my heart has been deeply touched by Medjugorje and we look forward to re-visiting that holy city one day. I have a small gift for Slavenka that I forgot to give to her, what is the best way to send her an item? May the Lord and our Blessed Mother richly bless all of you as you have so richly blessed us!

In Christ,
Colleen Samson

  • From: Ted Steinkogler
  • Sent: Monday, September 23, 2013
  • To: Piernha Marc
  • Subject: Feedback - Pilgrimage to Jordan & The Holy Land September 5-17, 2013 201346

We had a great pilgrimage. We especially appreciated Father Damien – he was an inspirational spiritual director, teacher and friend. Our guides especially Sami were very knowledgeable and personable, and we always felt safe with the drivers.

The hotels and food were very good. We appreciated the lunches in Israel. They gave us a taste of what the Israelis eat and helped organize the daily activities.

Ted and Jayne Steinkogler

  • From: MaryAnn and Thomas Landmesser
  • Sent: Monday, September 23, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land: September 8-17, 2013 201347


Both my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed our first pilgrimage with 206 tours. Everything went very well considering the Syrian crisis and the Jewish holiday which caused some of the tours to be changed to different days but not a problem.

Our tour guide, Sami Tawil, was excellent. His knowledge of the Bible and how it pertained to the Holy Land sights we visited was remarkable. He was very accommodating to our small group and gave us some extra time for shopping here and there because of the size of our group. We were flexible and so was he. It made for a very relaxed pilgrimage.

Our spiritual guide, Father Damien Schill, was inspirational to us all. His knowledge of the Holy Land was extensive and enhanced the talks and prayers that we experienced together. We were blessed to have been on this pilgrimage with him.

Between Sami and Father Damien, we received a comprehensive education regarding the Bible and how it pertained to the sights that we visited and also the history of Israel. There were no questions that could not be answered between the two. I believe we were very lucky to have had Sami and Father Damien on our first pilgrimage. I would recommend them highly to anyone taking this pilgrimage to the Holy Land.

The meals at the hotels and restaurants were very good. I would only comment that our last lunch at the Dead Sea location was not nearly as good as the other lunchtime restaurants that we visited. Maybe that’s because the other restaurants were so much more superior than the last one, therefore, it was more noticeable.

Our hotels were nice also. The Olive Tree Hotel allowed my husband and I to stay longer in our room on our last day because our flight was at 11:30 pm in the evening. Of course, I think Sami helped to make that happen because of his relationship with the hotel.

Our small group of 13 was so cohesive from the very start. Some were new as we were and others had been on prior pilgrimages. We all got along and hope to keep in touch as time goes on.

As you can tell, we were very satisfied. I would venture to say that there may be another pilgrimage in our future with 206 tours. I would be especially interested if Father Damien would be a spiritual guide on another 206 tour somewhere else in the future.

Thank you for doing such a fine job in organizing this Holy Land tour.

MaryAnn and Thomas Landmesser

  • From: Alicia Nielsen
  • Sent: Monday, September 23, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain, Lourdes & Paris: June 27 - July 11, 2013 201348

Hi Rosalie,

I hope you remember us… me and my granddaughter, Lauren Hain. We went on the Pilgrimage ( Portugal, Spain, France ) last June 27, 2013 to July 11, 2013 with an extra two days for me and Lauren in Paris. Our priest was Father Peter and our guide was Jesus ( very " appropriate " name ).

I would like to apologize it took me forever to give you a feedback. However, I would like to thank you and the whole 206 Tours crew !!! We had a very wonderful trip!!!! Everything was taken cared of … even our extra 2 days after the tour, including our transpo to the airport. Our guide Jesus made sure we had that before he said good-bye to us. I will definitely refer you to everybody I know !! In fact, a friend of mine who knew I went on this tour was asking me what travel agency I got, and I immediatly referred you to her.

Again, thank you so much for your patience, your efficiency, your professionalism, etc. Please extend that to all at your office too !! We really enjoyed it !!! If we ever go again, it will definitely be with your agency. Thank you.

Alicia L.Nielsen

  • From: Ellzeena
  • Sent: Sunday, September 22, 2013
  • To: Stefanie Meyer
  • Subject: Lourdes/Paris/Rome 9/10-9/20 201350

Just want to say that this is the most fabulous travel experience I have ever had (and I have traveled A LOT). Although it took a lot of physical stamina, it was wonderful in every sense of the word. Javier is the BEST. I’m planning to use 206 again as you may know but now am thinking about the Fatima/Spain/Lourdes trip and staying a bit longer in Lourdes. Will advise. THANKS!

Jill Frankenberry

  • Sent: Sunday, September 22, 2013
  • To: Piernha Marc
  • Subject: Fatima, Spain, & Lourdes September 5-14, 2013 201351

Thank you, 206 Tours, for a marvelous pilgrimage! I can’t say it was always easy, but it was always inspiring, educational and harmonious.

Javier is the best tour guide I have ever had the pleasure of traveling with. He has so much knowledge of every place we visited. He always prepared us for each day, outlining the schedule, repeating the times and places for meetings, yet he was never pushy. This man really enjoys his job! He is kind to everyone and patient as a saint. Always a smile, always aware, always getting us to the best positions and the best times. I would take any trip with Javier as leader.
The local tour guides were OK–in Spain very good, in France a bit hard to understand. We were spoiled by having Javier, who speaks excellent English.

The hotels were clean and well located. We were checked in efficiently and, except once, bags were delivered quickly. The bus was always clean and comfortable. Driver was excellent. Well-timed stops along the way.

There were only two things on the trip I might like to see improved:
The flight connections. I admit I have no idea what all the airline rules and regulations are, but we had a 6-hour layover in Amsterdam on the way over, and again 6 hours in Paris on the way back. There were at least two flights to Lisbon between the time we arrived and the time our flight left. Also it seemed it might be easier (and faster) to return from Lourdes by way of Madrid, rather than Paris. In all it took some 21 hours to get home door to door.

The lack of drinking water, especially the first few days. Every tour I’ve taken previously always provided a bottle of water before we left, or carried water on the bus.

This is my second 206 Tour and I enjoyed both of them thoroughly. Thank you for making pilgrimage tours available.

Patricia Reband

  • From: Gerrish Flynn
  • Sent: Thursday, September 19, 2013
  • To: Rinda Kanidinc
  • Subject: Tour #200, 3-15 Sept to the Netherlands. Germany, Belgium and Switzerland 201352

Overall, great tour. Father Guido Gockel was superb. Also high praise for tour guide and driver. In conjunction with the Kalbs more detailed comments will be sent in the next week or so.

Many thanks..
Gerry Flynn

  • From: Fr. Mike
  • Sent: Wednesday, September 18, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Guadalupe & Mexico City - September, 2013 201353

Hi Rosalie and all at 206 Tours,
Thanks so much for making the pilgrimage we just returned from such a wonderful experience.
Although the group was small, we all were compatible and found sharing our pilgrimage together a blessings.
It was an additional blessing to celebrate my 34th anniversary of priesthood at the shrine.
Know of my prayer for you and your wonderful ministry.

Fr. Mike

  • From: Jennifer A. LaDelfa
  • Sent: Tuesday, September 17, 2013
  • To: Piernha Marc
  • Subject: Fatima, Spain, & Lourdes 201354


I would like to say this was one of the best experiences in me and my mothers lives. Our tour guide, Javier Gonzalez was perfect.

Thanks for your dedication in providing outstanding satisfaction.
I would definitly book with your company again.

Kind Regards,
Jennifer and Adriana LaDelfa

  • From: Bethany
  • Sent: Tuesday, September 17, 2013
  • To: Piernha Marc
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain, & Lourdes 201355

Dear Piernha,
The pilgrimage was wonderful! The people on our tour were so kind and fun loving as well as prayerful and devout. I especially appreciated our tour guide, Javier. If I ever go on another pilgimage I would want him as my guide. I have been on two other guided pilgimages and he was the best. He was so thoughtful and caring. He surprised us numerous time: tasty pastry on our first day, a picnic lunch with a beautiful view and gelatto for everyone. We aslo met his family who joined us in Salamanca. He saw us off on our last day at 4:00 a.m. in his pajamas! We were truly one big family.

Thank you so much for all the arrangements and honoring my special request for seating on the plane. The only unfortunate part of the trip was our connection in Minneapolis. We almost missed our plane to Denver because there was not enough time between arrival and departure.

God bless you,

  • From: Joyce Simoes
  • Sent: Thursday, September 5, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Mexico City & Cancun | August 26- September 1, 2013 201356

We have reached safely back to Calgary. Thank you for making all the arrangements for our pilgrimage.
Our special thanks to our tour escort Elvira and Mario our driver for helping to make our pilgrimage a memorable one.
God Bless 206 tours.

Joyce & Dick & our children; Joann/Debbie/Emmanuel/Marian

  • From: Marty
  • Sent: Thursday, September 5, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Fr. Sig Peplowski & Fr Peter Glabik | Poland | August/September 2013 201357

Hi Amanda,

My wife Lee Ann and I had an inspirational and wonderful pilgrimage to Poland:
1) Aleusander Stanclik, our tour guide, was the primary reason the pilgrimage was so enjoyable. From the time we arrived in Warsaw Airport Mon. 8-26 until our departure from Krakow Airport Tues. 9-3 Alex was there every step of the way to insure that our needs were met. Alex has such a pleasant personality and smiling face that he put the entire group at ease on our whirl wind tour of all the religious sites. For me, the highlight of the tour was at Mass at Jasna Gora Monastery in Czestochowa. Alex arranged for Father Zig and Father Peter to have Mass at the center altar in front of the Black Madonna. We sat in the first 3 rows within the altar area so close to the Madonna that we could almost touch the picture. This is just an example of how Alex went the extra yard for us on his tour. During the bus rides, Alex always had interesting commentaries on all the religious sites we visited. In addition, he played great Video tapes on Blessed Pope John Paul, St. Faustina, and St. Maximillian Kobe lives during the rides between sights. On our last day in Krakow at dinner, Alex arranged the performance of the Folk Group Cracov-Ianie who were outstanding.

These are just a few examples of Alex’s excellent treatment of us pilgrims. I would recommend 206 tours in the future especially if Aleusander Stanclik was the tour guide.

2) Zbyszek, the bus driver, also did an excellent job navigating the bus through the busy Polish roads to get us to our destination on time and dropping us off as close as possible to the religious sites.

Marty & Lee Ann

  • From: Claudia Jones
  • Sent: Thursday, August 29, 2013
  • To: 206 Tours
  • Subject: Wonderful tour!!! Thank you 201358

Hello my name is Claudia Jones. I’m writing to thank you very much for the wonderful, amazing tour you provided my
husband and I this past June with father Calloway. Everything was very well organized. Our tourist guide, Alex and Javier were awesome!! Very professional, honest and had a great devotion to our beautiful Catholic faith and their job. Please pass this message to them and I look forward to another pilgrimage with you all. Thanks and God bless!!!

Claudia Jones

  • From: Anne Weiler
  • Sent: Thursday, August 22, 2013
  • To: 206 Tours
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Portugal, Spain, Paris, and Rome 201359

To All at 206Tours:

Thank you all for the birthday wishes and a wonderful trip. I returned July 12th from pilgrimage to Portugal, Spain, Paris and Rome. I was very pleased beginning from the informational booklets to prayer books to your wonderful personnel. I felt prepared and was able to relax with the list of things to bring. I enjoyed Mass everyday with Fr. Peter and our daily rosary. Jesus V. our guide through Paris was very helpful and prepared with his directions, for getting us back to the hotels, reminding us of where we were staying when we went out to explore a bit. His schedules were easy to follow for times of meals, wake up, and leaving for the day. His caring manner and kindness was felt daily although his patience was tried many times with lost luggage etc. I got help with dietary needs and finding distilled water. The hotels were all well located. I experienced healing, love and a closer connection to God with all the holy places we visited, as well as friendship with those I traveled with. Thank you for a wonderful trip. I will surely contact you again for my next trip.

Love & Prayers,
Anne Weiler

  • From: Patricia Fidgeon
  • Sent: Sunday, August 18, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain & Lourdes: July 20-29, 2013 201361

Dear Rosalie,
It’s been almost three weeks since I returned from my pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain and Lourdes and I can’t stop thinking about all the wonderful experiences I shared with my fellow pilgrims. I was blessed to be traveling with my nephew, Fr. John McCartney, who made my spiritual journey even more meaningful.

Everything about the trip was perfect. Our chaplain, Fr. Benedict Croell O.P. was outstanding in every way. His homilies were beautiful and he was a delight to be with.

Our guide Javier Valdivieso, also a delight, made everything flow smoothly. He was a wealth of information and fit in so well with our group. Miguel was our expert driver.

This was my second pilgrimage with 206 Tours and I haven’t been disappointed. The Holy Land trip in January with Scott Hahn was a very special experience that I will never forget. I’m looking forward to the pilgrimage to Italy in March 2014 with Scott Hahn.

My thanks to everyone at "206" for all of your hard work to make these pilgrimages so exceptional. Thanks, also, to all who helped me with my arrangements.

Regards to Milanka, Yaritza et al.

Best wishes,

Pat Fidgeon

  • From: william eagan
  • Sent: Friday, August 16, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain, Lourdes & Paris: August 3-15, 2013 201360


The trip was uplifting and peaceful. There was a consensus that we were on a journed like Jesus to Jerusalem. It took a few days to get used to the early rise. We adjusted fine. The hotels were of high quality. There was a genuine sense of community through the travel on the bus, the good meals, and casual times. At the end, we exchanged addresses and emails.

I like to think my homily comments addded to our prayer. We sang each day. At Loyola, we added the opportunity for the sacrament of the sick. We also said the rosary each day on the bus. I asked various people to lead, and most were happy to do it. Fatima was quiet and prayerful. The candle procession was small and intimate. Lourdes was more powerful. Endless procession, emphasis on healing. The group enjoyed the architecture of Salamanca. We learned about the bios of St. Theresa of Avila, St. Ignatius, Bernadette Soubirous, St. Therese of Liseux, and Catherine Labore. Being a jesuit, I found Loyola filled with consolation.

Jesus was our guide. You have a high quality employee in him. Very fluent in Spanish, English and French. He dealt with all the local people. On one occasion, two women left their passports in the safe in the last hotel. He did not get angry, but arranged for someone to drive the items up. Good sense of humor, and treating each pilgrim with respect. As the chaplain, he always arranged the place of the Mass. He is also a man of faith. That I particularly appreciated. I had people say the rosary, got readers, etc. Jesus served the Mass, and chose to receive communion. Often, on our way to a destination, especially if it was at a distance, he would show cd’s that gave background on the place we would visist. Bernadette, Fatima, a bio of JP II, and also a doumentary on his being pope. I felt he was a good person to work with. He was kind and compassionate.

Our weather was good. The itinerary was varied. In the local places, we had local guides. I found them quite knowledable. We had two bus drives, and how they managed on the streets and narrow passages, I am amazed. I think most of us were careful about tips for Jesus and the drivers.

If there is an evaluation on me, that, of course is fine. I certainly would be open to another pilgrimage with 206.

Fr. Eagan, SJ

  • From: Nolan P. Zeringue
  • Sent: Friday, August 2, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Medjugorje with Fr. Dean Danos: July 7-15, 2013 201362

Dear Rosalie,

Our trip to Medjugorje was very enjoyable. No problem at all with the transportation to and from. The only thing I would change would be the tour guide. She was always too much in a hurry it seemed to get things finished. I had to stay at the Blue Cross and the rest went up Apparition Hill which was good with me because I have had heart problems. The group said she was in a hurry to get up the hill and kept trying to pass up a group of priests who were traveling slowly up the hill, she left the group on top of the hill came back to get me and came down to where her husband was waiting and they brought me back to the hotel. They went home. Our group made their way back to the hotel themselves. By Friday she said we were finished with the schedule. We as a group decided to pay extra for a trip to Dubrovic on Saturday. Again we were on our own. She met us at 3:00PM to catch the bus back. Back at home reading a book on Medugorje, there were other things we could have experienced if we had known. She stated that she did not like to work in July, but took the tour to help a friend! I am sure she was short on the tips as some in the group who had put money aside in the envelopes, at the end of the week, opened the envelopes and removed some of what had been put in there for here before giving the tip to her.

Thank you
NP Zeringue

  • From: Rosemary Casey
  • Sent: Friday, August 2, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to El Camino: July 5-15, 2013 201363

Aloha Rosalie,

I’ve just returned from the Camino and Spain trip – took an additional two weeks to travel to the south of Spain. Wonderful country!

My one thought about the Camino experience is a logistical one: Mass schedules and locations should be better scheduled to enable pilgrims to use their best energies in the early part of the day. Either schedule Masses earlier in the morning (for example, 7 am) so that pilgrims can move out sooner, taking advantage of the cooler time of the day in July (it was VERY hot), while still incorporating the spiritual aspect at the beginning of the day. It’s my only complaint. I understand that no one knew it would be so very HOT during our pilgrimage, but perhaps this could be considered for future pilgrimages.

Our guide, Javier, and driver, David, were wonderful, very helpful and informative, and very caring of each of us. I was usually the last to come in because I simply walk slower and was more affected by the heat than others, and seeing them at the meeting locations was a great energy booster at a time of very low energy.

The accommodations were great! Hot showers and good food very welcomed! Locations were lovely!
I’ve not yet downloaded my photos but will send along any that I think might be useful to you.

Many thanks!

Much aloha,
Rosemary Casey

  • From: Bruce Tomaselli
  • Sent: Friday, July 26, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Italy with Altoona-Johnstown Diocese Pilgrimage | Italy | July 8-16, 2013 201364

Hi Amanda!

I had a great time in Rome and the surrounding countryside because of 206 Tours, its guides, and the accompanying officials such as you and Patrick. You did a great job of planning, getting us in and out of the historic churches and museums, and onto the next piece of history. The knowledge of your guides was readily apparent. Also, they maintained smiles on their faces and displayed unending patience with us. What you are able to pull off on another continent with 124 people in a group was nothing short of amazing. Thanks so much for such a great effort on your part.

Your Buddy,

  • From: Tony DeGol
  • Sent: Wednesday, July 24, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Italy with Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown | July 8-16, 2013 201365


After a week back in Altoona-Johnstown, I’m getting back into my usual routine. I miss Rome already — especially the beautiful basilicas and the wonderful outdoor restaurants.

I have nothing but positive things to say about the trip. The accommodations were great, and the pilgrimage was everything we hoped it would be. I continue to receive glowing comments from our pilgrims. Not one pilgrim has said anything negative to me about the trip. You were both wonderful to us, and Helga, Gaia, and Danyiella were outstanding tour guides.

Thank you for everything you did. I hope I have the chance to meet up with you both again.


Tony DeGol
Assistant to Bishop

  • From: Fr. Russ Roide, S.J.
  • Sent: Wednesday, July 24, 2013
  • To: Milanka Lachman
  • Subject: still in Spain 201366

Dear Milanka,

I am still in Spain near Malaga helping in a Jesuit English speaking parish for the UK, Irish and other people who have come to live instead of the cold up north. I was here ten years ago when I was studying Spanish and I am enjoying myself. I am going to Madrid on Monday to visit friends whom I knew at Stanford U as chaplain and will return to SFO on August 5.

The Camino was extraordinary. We could not have had a better group and Javier and David, our driver, were extraordinary. The whole experience was unbelievably wonderful, guides, hotels, food, transportation, depth of spirituality etc, but no rain and the heat was about 90-93F every day. So that was difficult, but we did out best. I was out of commission for a day and a half as I fell going down a hill, but four of us had go to the doctor to have things checked. blisters, rashes, gastroenteritis, fall. I compensated for my hip bruise by walking on the right side which did not help. So, the doctor told me to take ibuprophen (a lot) and gave me some medication for my stomach while I was taking it. But Javier said get the certificate as I did my best and loved the experience. Everyone commented on the organization of 206 tours and lunches and dinners were really terrific. But tinto de verano became the petrol (drink) some needed to move on.

I loved saying Mass each day and had a theme which they really enjoyed. I built on it during the whole pilgrimage and we all found it a deeply spiritual experience.

Thank you for everything, and I look forward to traveling with you again next June to the Holy Land. I will also push the Camino Ignaciano when I get all of the brochures. You and your staff are wonderful and thanks again for everything.

Fr. Russ Roide, S.J.

  • From: Louise Oblinsky
  • Sent: Tuesday, July 23, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Altoona-Johnstown Diocese Pilgrimage | Italy | July 8-16, 2013 201367


I would like to express my overall satisfaction with the Pilgrimage to Rome on July 8-16, 2013.  My questions were always answered ,even before the trip whenever I called 206 tours with any concerns.  Your booklet was very clear in telling travelers to expect much walking and conditions of the climate in Rome in July.  There were no surprises about the heat and extensive walking required.  Also, in your booklet, you mentioned that time would be limited for shopping, due to your desire to include  sightseeing  as much as possible on the pilgrimage.  I agree with that because who knows if I will ever return to Rome in my lifetime.  I can rest and recover from lack of sleep now that I am back in America.  THANK YOU  for a  WONDERFUL  TRIP!!!  You balanced  spiritual activities with tourist attractions, and most of all the food was GREAT!
Louise Oblinsky

  • From: Laurie Meeuwissen
  • Sent: Monday, July 22, 2013
  • To: 206 Tours
  • Subject: Fatima, Spain, Lourdes & Paris: June 19- July 1, 2013 201368

We wish to express our gratitude for such a well-run pilgrimage. It was wonderful not to worry about the small details and just be able to immerse ourselves in the spiritual experience.

Our guide Javier was first rate – helpful, informative, personable and openly demonstrated his faith. Our 10-year-old daughter felt especially welcomed by Javier and Alessandro. Javier’s gift to her and the way he connected it to Lucia of Fatima was especially touching to our daughter.

Attending Mass every day and having Father Calloway celebrate was another highlight. His homilies were great! We were very grateful for his presence. Our group was wonderful and we enjoyed meeting many other pilgrims from all over, all with different backgrounds yet sharing a common faith.

We will definitely recommend 206 Tours to anyone considering a pilgrimage, and thank you for your professional service and the opportunity for spiritual growth.

Laurie, Matthew, Sarah Meeuwissen

  • From: Fr. Les Szymaszek
  • Sent: Friday, July 19, 2013
  • To: Milanka Lachman
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Poland – June 2014 201370

Good afternoon Milanka,
Just wanted to say hi and THANK YOU for a fabulous pilgrimage experience, and I am sure I am speaking on behalf of all the Pilgrims. From what I hear they all cannot stop talking about it ! Everyone loved my homeland and all the places we’d seen associated with St. Faustyna, Bl. JPII, St. Maximilian, Bl. Fr. Jerzy Popieluszko, and many others.
I don’t think they quite expected what they had found Poland to be :); with the exception of Fr. Carlos perhaps, who had been there before.

Personally it was a time of many graces and blessings. I was edified and inspired by everyone’s faith, participation, and stamina !!! We were on the move constantly, which if you ask me is exactly what pilgrimage is all about – people on the journey, on the move, to meet God in places, and faces around us.

I’d like to express my deep gratitude to you and making it happen despite the challenges we had encountered. Thank you so much. I have personally prayed for you at all the shrines and I know the pilgrims also remembered you in their prayers.

I was especially impressed with our tour guide Janusz. I’d certainly recommend him as a tour guide for any group. He was very knowledgeable, courteous but firm when he needed to, flexible and accommodating, but all in all very helpful and pleasant to be around. And he got things done !, i.e. he was able to arrange Mass right in front of Our Lady of Czestochowa early on the day of our departure. Our group was the only one in the chapel, Tommy Deegan was able to serve, and Fr. Carlos and I concelebrated the Mass offered in Latin by one of the Pauline fathers, accompanied by the quartet of singers, and music. It was truly heavenly. After I explained to the main celebrant that our group was English speaking, and because no one else was to be present right before the Icon, he permitted us to use English for readings. This was definitely one of the highlights of the pilgrimage, which everyone will treasure.

Many thanks and may the Lord continue to bless you in your ministry +
Fr Les

  • From: Cindy Lucas
  • Sent: Friday, July 19, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Altoona-Johnstown Diocese Pilgrimage | Italy | July 8-16, 2013 201371

I want to tell you how wonderful the tour was,the people we met and the organization was exceptional. I was pleased to meet you and Patrick hope you got some rest after such a long trip back. There was nothing I would have changed the tour guides, the meals, everything was superior!! Thank you and God Bless.


  • From: Rita Bush
  • Sent: Friday, July 19, 2013
  • To: Rinda Kanidinc
  • Subject: 206 Tour to Rome 201372

Thanks for organizing the July 8 – 16 trip to Rome in 2013 escorted by our Bishop Mark from Altoona Johnstown Diocese. It was my first experience to Europe and I thoroughly enjoyed everything. It was truly amazing seeing the Vatican and also the audience with Pope Francis. It’s a trip I will always remember.

Rjb from Bedford

  • From: Louise Lotze
  • Sent: Friday, July 19, 2013
  • To: Carol Cassano
  • Subject: Medjugorje Pilgrimage with Ivan Dragicevic | July 7-15, 2013 201369

Dear Carol,

My recent pilgrimage to Medjugorje was awesome, as usual. Truly Heaven touches earth there and I hope to return again next year.

My accommodations at Ivan’s was fantastic and my roommate who was a stranger at first became a close and best friend in a couple days time. I met so many truly lovely people from across the globe: Australia, India, and many locations in the US. My only fear from the start was my final trek from Newark to Cleveland. The time allotted was very close. It was good that I was familiar with getting around in airports and from terminal to terminal. When I boarded the flight to Cleveland it took off in just 5 minutes time. That was too close for comfort but I am grateful it all worked out. I managed to make a quick and necessary phone call home and get to the restroom before boarding. I appreciate all that the 206 does for my pilgrimages each year. Thank you very much. The priests who were pilgrims as well with our group rather than spiritual advisors were both excellent and shared a lot in their homilies for us.


C. Louise Lotze

  • From: Robert, Liza, Meret and Camille Cruz
  • Sent: Thursday, July 18, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Lourdes, Paris & Rome: July 2-12, 2013 201373

Dear Rosalie,

Our whole family would like to thank you and the whole 206 Tours’ staff for making this religious pilgrimage (Lourdes, Paris and Rome) a reality. My husband and I will be celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary this coming January and we opted to embark on a pilgrimage along with our daughters rather than throwing a big party. From the moment I inquired from Rinda, she was very accomodating and I knew we would be in good hands.

This tour was really memorable for us and has touched many aspects of our life. I am a devotee of our Lady of Lourdes since I was a young girl and to honor her, I named our youngest daughter Maria Lourdes Carmela. When she had a mishap when she was barely a year old fallling from her stroller, she was barely alive and I prayed hard to Our Lady to give her a second life. She did , and I promised to bring her my daughter, and this summer was the realization of that promise.

Our trip to Lisieux was another important aspect of our tour. I prayed also to St. Therese before to give me my soulmate and asked for signs of white flowers. She did gifted me with my wonderful husband and we could not think of a better way to thank her but in person. We were so overcome with gratitude when we viewed her grandiose basilica and of course, right on the garden at the entrance were white flowers and white roses. Of course, we all captured that in our camera for posterity.

And for my other daughter also named Mary, she also had her special moment when we entered a church in Rome not knowing that the relics of St. Catherine of Siena was there, from whom she adapted her confirmation name. Of course, our trip was not smooth sailing from the start. It’s as if our faith was really being tested. Two weeks before the trip,there was a catastrophic flooding in Lourdes and we were uncertain if the trip would be cancelled or not. But you Rosalie were with us all the way monitoring the situation and assured us that unless there’s a final call from your contact in France, the tour would go as scheduled.

Then, there’s the delayed flight from our hometown (Charlotte, NC) and we would miss our connection to Paris and Lourdes. We immediately called the 206 emergency response no. and Yaritza was very helpful. We did manage to be on the next flight and since we would miss the bus that would take us from the airport to the hotel in Lourdes, we asked your team to arrange it with Jesus Vivas – our tour escort and Javier Gomez – our local contact in France.

Before we knew it, all of you were sending me e-mails assuring us that there’s no need to worry and that everything would be taken cared of. True enough, the Pau airport was almost deserted when we arrived there, but we felt safe when the driver you sent showed up. My husband said what if we did not join a tour and just went there by ourselves, we would not know where to go and how to proceed, as the airport was already closing and there were no public transpos in that area.

When we reached our hotel, it was almost midnight but Jesus was at the front entrance waiting for us. He and the majority of our tour group arrived that afternoon from Spain. But there he was, still very energetic and led us to the dining table of Hotel Moderne where dinner was waiting just for our family. Can you believe that? He won our hearts from day one!

Of course, not to forget was our missing luggage which only arrived when we were about to leave already from Lourdes for Paris. Again, you and the 206 staff have been very helpful and Jesus did not stop until Air France could give him an answer.

Special mention is also appropriate for our spiritual director – Fr. Peter Dugandzic who only did not celebrate our daily Masses and delivered very meaningful and beautiful homilies, but also volunteered to be our tour guide especially when we were in Rome. We lost count of the number of churches that we were able to see because he took us on a walking tour of Rome amidst the sultry weather. As a bonus, he also showed us the place where he and the other American priests stayed during their studies in Rome. Fr. Peter also took us to the best places to have lunch and where to get the best gelato in town. The things that he has shown us were more than what the itinerary listed. He did not take a rest and spent the supposed to be free afternoons guiding his “flock.” We really salute him and are very thankful that he was our priest for this trip.

On our last Mass at the small chapel located at the grounds of the catacombs, Fr. Peter also called my husband and me to the altar along with our daughters and he blessed us in advanced for our upcoming wedding anniversary. It was so solemn and touching with just the right amount of light filtering thru the chapel windows. We could not ask for anything better than that and for our marriage to be blessed in such a way, we were really touched and our hearts were filled with gratitude.

All in all, despite the challenges, we can say that this trip will be forever etched in our hearts. We will surely join another pilgrimage with 206 tours God permitting. All of you at 206 are not ony very professional but more importantly, you truly care for all your pilgrims.

Thank you again and we wish Ms. Lachman and all of you continued success so you may also continue to be a blessing to all of us.

God bless!
Robert, Liza, Meret and Camille Cruz

  • From: Bryn Walsh
  • Sent: Thursday, July 18, 2013
  • To: Carol Cassano
  • Subject: Medjugorje Pilgrimage with Ivan Dragicevic| June 2-10, 2013 201374

Hello Carol,

I am responding for myself, Bryn Walsh and for my husband, Norman Edgerton. The trip was fantastic; accommodations wonderful, food very good, it was lovely to stay with Ivan this time and to experience the apparitions in his own chapel. The only down side is the layover in Frankfurt while we wait for the connection to Split; it’s very long. But it is a pilgrimage after all.

Bryn & Norm
We definitely want to go back next year.

  • From: Rev. Joseph
  • Sent: Wednesday, July 17, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to El Camino: July 5-15, 2013 201375

Dear Rosalie,

First let me say that the pilgrimage was outstanding! My highest compliments to the team that put it together. Especially great was Xavier V our guide. He made the camino experience great. My only suggestion has to do with the unusual heat. We had no rain and excess heat (high 90’s). So starting later in the morning after Mass meant that we walked in the afternoon sun: brutal. So is it possible when such unusual heat strikes can Mass be in the evening, perhaps even at the hotel if necessary, so that the pilgrims can set out earlier in the day and not have to walk in the noon day sun? In three years I will be celebrating my 35th anniversary as a priest and 65th birthday. I am thinking of trying to organize a pilgrimage starting at Fatima and then going to the Spanish border to walk about 125 km to Santiago. Would 206 Tours be able to help me with this? I will contact you again. I also would request Xavier V and David, the bus driver, I cannot tell you what a great team they are!

Father Joe

  • From: Jean Simpson
  • Sent: Tuesday, July 16, 2013
  • To: Samantha Godfrey
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain & Lourdes with Fr. Donald Calloway | June 19-28, 2013 201376

Thank you to all at 206 Tours for a most wonderful spiritual journey! I would not hesitate to go again! I mentioned to Fr Calloway that I would dearly love to visit the Holy Land and hoped that one could be arranged under his spiritual guidance! Please keep me informed should this ever eventuate. All the pilgrims got on so well, were helpful to one another and so friendly even though we came from such diverse backgrounds and locations. May God bless you all and please continue to serve Him in your work!

With thanks and blessings,

Regina Simpson NZ

  • From: kelly
  • Sent: Tuesday, July 16, 2013
  • To: Yaritza Rodriguez
  • Subject: July 8-15 Pilgrimage to Ivan's in Medjugorje 201377

Hi Yaritza,

Just wanted to write to you quickly to thank you for all of your hard work and help in arranging the trip for my friend, Christine and I to Medjugorje from July 8-15. Long story short, getting her last visa was down to the wire. She didn’t get it until she was at the airport on the way to her departure gate. Then the flight details were all wrong and it was just a stressful stressful experience. But, she ultimately made it and had the most rewarding time of her life. So thank you so much!!!


  • From: Kristin Walker
  • Sent: Sunday, July 14, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Poland, Prague & Vienna | May 7-19, 2013 201378

The pilgrimage was a tremendous blessing to myself and all of the pilgrims! The new friendships formed during our time together will last forever; in fact we have one new couple who met on the pilgrimage that may even end up married before too much longer! God is so good.

The experience of Divine Mercy was completely transformative. I came into the Catholic Church through DM, and this pilgrimage brought me into the depths of God’s love and mercy in so many new ways- thank you to 206 as always for opening those doors. I look forward to many more pilgrimages with 206 and the blessings that await!

As always the food, accommodations, and guides were a complete blessing that only made the pilgrimage better. Thank you for everything!

I’m including some photos from the pilgrimage; please add these to the Pilgrim’s Place website and let me know when this has been done.

On a final note, I had our last Mass of the pilgrimage (in Mariazell) said for Milanka and 206 Tours. I tried texting you Milanka but it never went through. Anyway I wanted to return some of the graces back to you and your incredible ministry, and this is the best I could do 😉

In Christ,

  • From: Regina O'Donnell
  • Sent: Saturday, July 13, 2013
  • To: Samantha Godfrey
  • Subject: Fatima, Spain, Lourdes & Paris | June 27 - July 9, 2013 201379

Hello Samantha,
The Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain, Lourdes & Paris last June 27- July 9, 2013 was wonderful it was beyond my expectations. I was with my 2 children, we made this journey to find strength, comfort and peace. I lost my son John the brother of my 2 kids Jen and Therese last February 5, 2013. The pilgrimage was very meaningful and the priest with us was Fr. Peter Dugandzic was very understanding. Jesus Vivas had a lot of patience. I am sending this note to thank you — "206 Tours" you made our journey a lot easier. Surely, I will highly recommend you to others.

God Bless
Regina O’Donnell

  • From: Michael Ray Derosena
  • Sent: Thursday, July 11, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain & Lourdes | June 27- July 6, 2013 201380

Dear Rosalie,

This is another pilgrimage with 206 Tours, we won’t forget. Initially, we had selected (twice) Tour # 56 – Shrines of Spain, that was cancelled, just few weeks before the dates of departure. So, we decided this year to make again the pilgrimage to Lisbon, Santarem, Fatima, Burgos, Avila, for the second time, and Lourdes for the third time, which was also included in our journey to Nevers, Lisieux, Paris, three years ago, – all three pilgrimages with the same 206 Tours.

This one was again a great experience. Everything was just perfect, although we had some moments of fear, when we learned about the recent flood in Lourdes – June 18, 19, 20 (check this link to see the magnitude of the disaster: ), and the possibility of not being able to drink or to take a bath in the Lourdes water, the main reason for us traveling to Lourdes, beside participating to the Blessed Sacrament Procession, the Torchlight Marian Procession, and the Way of the Cross (High Stations). Surprisingly, the French authorities were able to quickly clean up and reopen the place to pilgrims coming from all over the world.

We were blessed to have a wonderful pilgrimage, that elevated our faith and brought to us, enormous spiritual benefits, in our search to get closer to God, through Jesus and the Virgin Mary.

Thanks to all 206 Tours staff, especially Stephanie who managed our case with a lot of patience and great understanding. Thanks to our local guide, Jesus Vivas, who was good as usual, although we really have strong preferences for Javier Gomez (who, unfortunately, was not with us this time). Thanks also to our driver, Miguel, who did an excellent job, driving us from day one in Lisbon to our final destination in Lourdes.

God Bless all of you,

Michael & Jackie

  • From: Leah
  • Sent: Wednesday, July 10, 2013
  • To: Yaritza Rodriguez
  • Subject: Re: Half Day in Medjugorje -con't 201381

Dear Yaritza,
I wanted you to know that we had a wonderful day in Medjugorje and we really appreciated our driver, Oliver, and guide Danijela! Thank you so much for arranging our tour as everything worked out beautifully. We hate to have to fly back home tomorrow and I hope we can come back again!

All the best,


  • From: Richard & Nancy Celino
  • Sent: Friday, July 5, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Lourdes, Paris, Nevers & Lisieux: June 24-July 1, 2013 201382

Dear Rosalie DeFilippo,

My wife Nancy, and I had a wonderful time on this tour. Nancy has ovarian cancer and this tour was tailored made for us in not only going to Lourdes, but also attending Mass in the chapel of the Miraculous Medal and visiting the church of St. Teresa of Liseux. Javier was an excellent tour guide and Father Peter had everyone pray over Nancy during the last Mass. Nancy had a CT/PET scan on Tuesday, the day after we got back and we will get the results next Tuesday. We are praying that the results will be very good.

The only negative thing about the trip were our seats on the plane going to and leaving from Paris. Nancy requested a n aisle seat and I requested a window seat close to her, preferably closer to the front of the plane.

As long as Nancy is well we will consider taking other tours in the future.

Nancy & Richard Celino

  • From: Steven & Carol Ham
  • Sent: Friday, July 5, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain & Lourdes with Fr. Calloway & Post-Tour to Paris, Nevers & Lisieux 201383


My wife, Carol, and I made the pilgrimage to Fatima, Lourdes, etc, with Fr Calloway, returning on July 1 after our extension in Paris. Overall, this trip exceeded all my expectations and I’m so thankful that we were inspired to do a pilgrimage instead of a secular tour. I was referred to your organization by Matthew Kelly and Allen Hunt of Dynamic Catholic, who spoke highly of you.

I thought the itinerary, pace, and selection of free time, visits, Mass, etc was all done exceedingly well. It was a privilege to be in the company of Fr Calloway and Fr Pete (in the Paris extension). It was also a privilege to be in the company of the other pilgrims. I was quite surprised with the international character of the group.

Javier Gomez is a jewel of a person and having him involved with our tour was a real bonus. During the main portion of the trip, he accompanied the “blue” group while Allesandro accompanied our “red” group. It was clear that Javier was exceedingly well qualified for his duties while Allesandro appeared to be “learning the ropes”. Nevertheless, both were great representatives of your organization.

The “surprises” of the pastries at St Jerome monastery, the ice cream cone in Santarem, and the beautiful banquet on the hill overlooking Alba de Tormes (?) was fantastic (thank you!). These were signs of an exceptional company working diligently to delight their clients/travelers.

I was pleasantly surprised with the hotels, and the meals were somewhere between good and exceptional.

I have a few small thoughts to make the tours even better, although they are presented within the context of an exceptionally appreciative pilgrim. I’ve been to Paris several times, and I understand the attraction of Paris for any traveler. That said, I would prefer to spend fewer nights and less time in Paris due to the traffic situation which is horrendous. We ran into a demonstration near our hotel one afternoon after returning from Lisieux and were trapped like airline travelers on the ramp on a long delay. Not your fault, but typical of Paris. The next day we spent better than eight hours on the bus while making the visit to Nevers. Again, horrendous traffic and delays on returning to Paris (on a Sunday afternoon). In essence, we had a short sightseeing afternoon in Paris in exchange for three nights and considerable inconvenience with traffic and delays. I know it is a tough call, but I would vote for fewer nights in Paris while still keeping Lisieux and Nevers on the itinerary.

The final morning in Paris the hotel staff did not have the hot meal items out for breakfast at 6:30 as advertised and we had some cold items for breakfast before departing for the airport at 7. I assume this was poor planning and execution by the staff.

As a veteran traveler I’m frankly surprised we didn’t have more “incidents”, and the lack of same speaks to the superb planning of your staff and execution by the people making the arrangements, our guides, and our priests.

Thank you for a wonderful, Catholic, spiritual experience that ranks as our best trip ever!

Steve Ham
Keswick, Va

  • From: Jayme Childers
  • Sent: Wednesday, July 3, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to El Camino | June 7-17, 2013 201384

Rosalie –
Our pilgrimage to Spain was fantastic!! I can’t thank you enough for approving the free trip after we had the drop out at the last second. I split it with my daughter. I remembered you all in prayer during the pilgrimage. Javier our guide was so knowledgeable and caring, and energetic guide. David was a super driver. Not only was he a driver but he and Javier made a team to keep us in check and encouraging us to carry on:) He was definatley more than a driver. I can’t really say enough how much this trip meant to us. I would do it again in a heartbeat!

God bless,
Jayme Childers

  • From: Traude
  • Sent: Saturday, June 29, 2013
  • To: Samantha Godfrey
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain & Lourdes with Fr. Donald Calloway | June 18-28, 2013 201385

Dear Samantha,

Thank you for all the information.

The tour was a great experience. I enjoyed it very much.

The tour guides were very good, the hotels and everything. Thank you for the picnic lunch – best picnic I have ever had!

All the best for you and the company.

God bless,


  • From: Judith Johnson
  • Sent: Thursday, June 27, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Thanks for a great pilgrimage 201386

Dear Rosalie,

I am writing to thank you for a fantastic trip to Medjugorje with the Michael Brown group that went May 29 to June 6, 2013. It was my first time to Medjugorje. Before that I had been to Rome with another company.

Highlights: the food, the hotel, the people (Especially Slavenka and the other lady, whose name I cannot remember now); getting to go to Ivan’s apparition, climbing the Apparition Hill and Krizevac in all that rain! I was especially touched by the excellent care taken by the company for the elderly lady who broke her arm. I think everyone went “above and beyond the call of duty” on that score!

I loved the talks by Michael Brown and I really found a good friend in Father James Mattaliano. What gifts to us from God both of these guys are, for individual reasons!

I was especially delighted with the stories and history provided for us by the guides and the trip to Tihaljina, which I did not expect.

Since coming home I recommend you to everyone. The pilgrimage changed my life all for the better, my spiritual life has deepened immeasurably. I can no longer look at life or the world as I did before the pilgrimage.

I am planning to return to Medjugorje if possible in the future, and plan at this time to use 206 Tours again…you are absolutely the greatest!

Praying for you, and many blessings

Judy Johnson

  • From: Fr. Tony Mugavero
  • Sent: Wednesday, June 26, 2013
  • To: Rinda Kanidinc; Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Greece, May 24-June 3, 2013 201387

Dear Rinda and Rosalie,

It is just over a month that I left for Greece "In the Footsteps of St. Paul" to be the spiritual director for a group of pilgrims from May 24-June 3. I really appreciated the amazing help I received especially from Stephanie… When I got to the ticket counter of my first flight, I was told that my flight had been delayed and that there were no flights available that could get me to my destination for another 2-3 days! I immediately called you while I was at the ticket counter, and Stephanie found flights for me that the airlines could not! Though I had to arrive a day late, it was much better than having to arrive 2-3 days late! I am very thankful for the way in which you, so competently and swiftly, were able to help me, as well as a fellow pilgrim who was also traveling with me from Rochester, New York, Betsy MacKinnon.

I was indeed blessed and very privileged to be the Spiritual Director for this pilgrimage… It truly was a wonderful experience. I could not have asked for a better group of people to be spiritually directing, as they already were so spiritual, prayerful, open, loving and fun! Once we were together, we bonded very quickly, helped and looked out for each other, and inspired each other!

Each person in our group was so special and brought unique gifts and blessings to our group… From Betsy, who is an excellent Catholic therapist and shared some wonderful insights with us; to Antonio, who took so many great pictures and who is a doctor and his very spiritual wife Lita and who both shared some cuisine from the Philippines with all of us; to Deacon John who shared some of the amazing service projects he is involved in in Vietnam and his musically gifted wife Knocky; to Sr. Krystyna, a beautiful Catholic religious sister who makes an immediate impression on everyone she meets regardless of whatever culture they are from and did so in all the places we visited with young and old alike; to Janis, who is a fun spirited, innocent and childlike soul, who is very prayerful and took more pictures than all of us with her 3 cameras!

In addition to having such wonderful pilgrims, we had a great tour guide in Ionniis. He was very knowledgeable and very gentle as well, and he seemed to fit us so nicely.

Thank you once again for giving me the wonderfully rich experience of walking "In the Footsteps of St. Paul" and being so blessed!

Love, in Our Lord,

Fr. Tony

  • From: Elizabeth Dunham
  • Sent: Sunday, June 23, 2013
  • To: Samantha Godfrey
  • Subject: Tour 40 - May 4 - May 16, 2013 Portugal, Spain, Paris 201388

Dear 206 Tours and staff,

On behalf of my Mother, Thelma Ang and her friend, Erlinda Reed, we thank you and your staff for providing us with the best experience on our pilgrimage. This is the second time I have accompanied my Mother on a 206 tour and everything went smoothly. My Mom’s friend was not with us on our first tour but she enjoyed her first time with 206. It was a very organized tour from start to finish. The interaction I had with the office staff, particularly Samantha was very pleasant and she was very helpful throughout the planning. Our lodging, the meals, the church visits, and the city tours were all very organized.

Our spiritual director, Father Michael Wimsatt was very helpful, attentive towards what people needed. He is a wonderful priest. We started in Portugal with a total of 43 people and ended in Paris on our last day with less than 15. With this amount of people, we had one tour guide Jesus Garcia. With such a big group, it was hard to accommodate what everyone was asking for. Jesus never stopped working. He was very detailed in all his instructions. He is very knowledgeable. He made sure everyone stayed together and he made time for each individual assisting him or her in what they needed. My Mother’s friend told Jesus the next time she goes on a pilgrimage, she wants to make sure he will be the guide. We really liked our bus driver Miguel. He was our driver from Portugal through Lourdes. He was another patient man and very helpful. Our local tour guide in Portugal was Felipe. He was very knowledgeable, friendly and funny. Having a consistent guide and bus driver on our tour made the pilgrimage a more pleasant trip.

I must say we had a great group of pilgrims on tour. Our ages on tour ranged from 13yrs old to over 85 yrs old. We all had different spiritual experiences that we shared with each other. It made our long bus rides to our locations fun.

There were of course more women than men on tour, and I think if I were to describe a memorable moment of this trip, it was the constant bathroom stops that our group had to make along the way and we were almost late on some of the Mass. We always made good time thanks to Jesus. I was joking with my Mom that I’m going to write to 206 and request that instead of some of our guided tours to the local church, it will be for the local bathrooms for the ladies.


Elizabeth Dunham

  • From: Brenda Frost
  • Sent: Thursday, June 20, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Fr. Tim Gareau | Holy Land | June 2013 201389

Dear Amanda,

The trip was phenomenal! The tour Guide was spectacular! Everything was wonderful!
Thank you for an incredible experience.


  • From: Ed Horvat
  • Sent: Thursday, June 20, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to El Camino: June 7-17, 2013 201390

Hi Rosalie,

My wife Susan and I had the most absolute best time possible on the El Camino tour. 206 Tours had everything planned perfectly and we simply can’t give any feedback other than completely positive.

The hotels were top-notch, the food was extraordinary and the spiritual experience was all we could have hoped for.

I’d like to give special mention to our guide Javier. What a wonderful man. He has great knowledge and pride in his home country. He made sure all of are needs were addressed and answered all our questions with utmost reliability. He’s insights into all aspects of Spain, from religious to historical to cultural were almost unbelievable. He communicated so many things that added to our complete enjoyment of the tour.

Lastly, Father Tim was excellent as a spiritual director and we really enjoyed our driver, David too.

Thanks for everything. You guys are doing things right!

Ed Horvat


  • From: Joanie Shannon
  • Sent: Tuesday, June 18, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to El Camino: June 7 -17, 2013 201391

Dear Rosalie,

I cannot express how wonderful my experience was. This was my first time traveling with a group, and it was first-rate. Everything – from the churches and sites we visited to the hotels we stayed in and the meals we enjoyed – was extraordinary. Fr. Timothy Farrell, our spiritual advisor, David our driver and the guides we had along the way were all outstanding. I must point out one person who was particularly outstanding – Javier Valdivieso, our tour escort. If ever there was a person who has found his calling, it is he. His passion for sharing his country with us was demonstrated every step of the way. It is obvious that he demands perfection of himself in his work and he is not satisfied until he is convinced he has done all he can to ensure his "family" is pleased. It was he who was responsible for making my first trip to Spain extraordinary. He helped to raise the experience of walking the camino from fantastic to "magnificent." I have returned to the U.S. a changed person.

In Christ,
Johanna Shannon

  • From: Vista World Travel
  • Sent: Friday, June 14, 2013
  • To: Rinda Kanidinc
  • Subject: Medjugorje May 6 - 7, 2013 201392

Rinda: I have been meaning to send you an email for weeks. My clients Dr. and Mrs. Green really enjoyed their quick trip to Medjugorje. I thank you for making this possible. I know these arrangements were outside your normal established tours. Thank you for working with us to make their dream happen.

Gene Marck

  • From: Mary Ford
  • Sent: Wednesday, June 12, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Medjugorje with Michael Brown: May 29- June 6, 2013 201393

Dear Rosalie,

This was my first pilgrimage to Medjugorje and it was everything I imagined and more! I truly felt spiritually renewed, and since returning home, I still feel a peace and desire to pray more; get closer to God through Our Blessed Mother; and hopefully bring others closer to God.

I think Michael Brown and his family made this trip special. I have most of his books, follow him on “Spirit Daily”, and have attended a retreat given by him a few years ago. He is a deeply spiritual man, which helped all of us. Also, Father James is very gifted, and his advice, blessings and healing prayers were very powerful.

We had a wonderful group. It was truly an amazing experience!

Thank you so much for your prayers and all you did to make it memorable.

Mary Ford

  • From: Michael Brown of Spirit Daily
  • Sent: Monday, June 10, 2013
  • To: Milanka Lachman
  • Subject: note 201394

Milanka, the trip and job you and the guides and everyone else at 206 did was astounding.

It’s not a word I use often.

But it finds a right place here. Medjugorje was spiritually and logistically perfect, and Rome was amazing — at least 12 churches and the Coliseum!

Slavenka is a guide we’d like to work with again, for sure; Gaia is tremendously proficient and delightful and thoughtful. They both are. You run a great ministry. We are extremely thankful — and feel undeserving of such tremendous treatment.

You have had and will continue to have my prayers. Thanks to all at 206 for a smashing victory. Thanks to Ronen for being a backup, which is greatly relieved my mind (though thanks to God I was able to do the site every day).

Great hotel. Great everything. Endless thanks.

Our love
Michael Brown

ps– I’m very interested in doing a Fatima/Lourdes/Le Laus/LaSalette trip, maybe ending in Paris (Rue du Bac), if you’re interested; let’s talk soon

  • From: Tanya Johnson
  • Sent: Monday, June 10, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land | May 4-13, 2013 201395

Hi Rosalie,

I had a wonderful pilgrimage to the holy land with 206 tours. I continue to recommend your company to many friends, colleagues et al. I think what really stands out for me was how our guide Jack demonstrated daily his desire for us to encounter Jesus on our trip. And I did. I would say it is like ministry work for him rather than a job, if that makes sense. Our whole group, including Fr. Kevin, routinely commented on how good he was. The sites were terrific. The accommodation was ok although something closer to old Jerusalem would have been my preference while in Jerusalem. We stayed 3 more days to revisit Jerusalem and am so pleased we were anle to do so. Jack still helped us even though tour was over – again showing his commitment – you have a gem there. I also wish to add that Fr Kevin did a wonderful job as spiritual director for our group. We all bonded very quickly with his terrific personality. He was great. Our group was fantastic. We all had different backgrounds and yet I enjoyed everyone in our group. This fellowship was such a blessing and really made the trip so very special. I would go again I enjoyed it so much! And thank you for the birthday email today – a nice gesture. Please say a birthday prayer for me.

Tanya Johnson

  • From: Beverly Tryon
  • Sent: Friday, June 7, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Medjugorje with Michael Brown: May 29- June 6, 2013 201396

Hi Rosalie,

The trip was excellent and very spiritually rejuvenating! My earlier excursion to Dubrovnik also worked out really well. Both Michael’s talks and Fr. Jim’s prayers etc were very helpful. Also Slavenka did a fantastic job as well.
Thank you again for all your help booking my trip!

God bless,
Beverly Tryon

  • From: Debbie Kinkaid
  • Sent: Friday, June 7, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Medjugorje with Michael Brown: May 29- June 6, 2013 201397

Dear Rosalie,

The trip was great!! The people were wonderful. Everyone- especially Slavenka, Father Jim and Michael Brown and the family!!! The accommodations and food also excellent. The lobby area of the hotel with all the free wine and snacks was appreciated. I would definitely recommend this tour/hotel (both beautiful and close to everything). Thank you!

Deborah Kinkaid

  • From: Janis Winchester
  • Sent: Wednesday, June 5, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Greece: May 24- June 3, 2013 201398

Dear Rosalie,

Everything was great!
I continually recommend 206 Tours to folks. I also compliment Milanka and her husband, who I met in Rome on the pilgrimage for the Beatification of Saint John Paul II, and how she has built a tour company that brings the Catholic perspective to places of historic and religious significance.


  • Sent: Wednesday, June 5, 2013
  • To: 206 Tours
  • Subject: Thank you 201399

Dear Rosalie DeFilippo/Stefanie,

The pilgrimage could not have been better. My group and Tour Guide was top notch. The experience was incredible; the group cannot stop talking about 206 Tours. It was the best, Thank God, because some of the group was traveling for the first time.

I want personally to thank all the staff and my tour guide for all your help. I hope my next time will be the same.

Mariyam Qasim

  • From: Sulak, Donna
  • Sent: Tuesday, May 28, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Medjugorje: May 15-23, 2013 2013101

Dear Rosalie,

The pilgrimage could not have been better. The host family and tour guide were top notch. The experience was incredible. Thank you for offering such an awesome tour.

God bless,

  • From: Joanne
  • Sent: Monday, May 27, 2013
  • To: Milanka Lachman
  • Subject: Thank you 2013102

Hi Milanka & Charlie

I wanted to personally thank you for a wonderful experience with the 206 tour organization. From Javier our tour guide with the level of energy beyond any tour guide I have ever experienced. To the hotels, food, people all top notch. But I have could have had a sandwich and stayed in a hostel everyday and it would not have mattered because I was with such a wonderful group of people which is what really made the trip all the rest was icing on the cake.

I thank you for such a great experience and the warmth, love and genuine nature that was exuded fromyou, Charlie and Javierwas such a gift to all!

Thank you again and I hope I get lucky enough togo on another 206 tour that will include you all again.

Live, Love, Laugh &Lust for Life Always,

(206 Camino Trip 5-12-13)

  • From: Fitzgerald
  • Sent: Monday, May 27, 2013
  • To: Fr. Fitzgerald
  • Subject: Congratulations on your one week anniversary. 2013100

Nothing could be finer than to be in Carolina especially after spending a grace filled ten days walking the Camino with you. It was only one week ago that you completed your journey. On the anniversary of that special accomplishment for you on your faith journey I will offer my rosary for you and your intentions this morning before my 9 AM Mass. I also prayed this prayer for you today. May the joy that you experienced last Monday remain with you all the days of your life. God be with you this day.

May Jesus guide you on pathways pleasant
And fill you with His Loving Presence
If mountains rise, Jesus strengthen you.
If valleys come, Jesus lead you through.
If you should thirst, Jesus,fill your cup.
If you should fall, Jesus lift you up.
This is my prayer for you today:
Jesus guide your footsteps all the way.

May St. James the Greater continue to pray for you……..

Stay safe.



  • From: lawrence miller <>
  • Sent: Sunday, May 26, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo <>, Rinda Kanidinc <>
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land with Fr. Kevin White, May 4-13, 2013 2013103

Dear Rosalie and Rinda:

The pilgrimage was indeed spiritually elevating and transforming, deepening our faith each step of the way, as we walked, prayed, joyfully sung, and, at times, wept, while we bore witness to, and, paid reverence to, the footsteps of Jesus’ life, ministry and ultimate sacrifice.

We were most satisfied and appreciative of 206 Tours’ efforts in formulating a meaningful pilgrimage itinery and accompaniments, appointing Fr. Kevin White for spiritual direction and Mr. Jack Hlais as our tour guide which truly succeeded in making our pilgrimage experience a powerfully moving and emotional one.

My wife and I both felt an immediate connection with Fr. White who embodied the qualities of a superb teacher and proving to be very thoughtful, compassionate, generous soul. It shall be noted, that our sentiments regarding Fr. White were held among all the other pilgrims in our group.

We can’t say enough good things about Mr. Jack Hlais – a person who is very lerned about our faith, demonstrates a devotion to being a good Christian, and, sincerely caring to share it with others. He’s much more than a wonderful tour guide – a good person, who really makes a difference, and, we like to think, a friend to all of us on the pilgrimage.

Our gratitude for God’s blessings in providing my wife and I the opportunity to share a spiritual adventure with a very special group of fellow pilgrims who readily bonded with Fr. White, "Jack," and each other from the onset. Our group demonstrated genuine closeness towards one another throughout the tour. We appreciate that fellow pilgrims are keeping in touch with us by sending e-mails and pictures.

We’re remaind very touched and moved by everyone and we will keep keep them all in our prayers – a sentiment shared among the others in the group.

We hold this pilgrimage experience very dear to our hearts and entertain thoughts about a reunion with the same members including Fr. White on some other pilgrimage in the future.

We’re grateful to 206 Tours for creating an experience that exceeded all of our expectations.


Larry and Barbara

  • From: Susan McFadden
  • Sent: Monday, May 20, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Lourdes: May 9-13, 2013 2013104

Good Morning Ms. DeFilippo,

I have been telling everyone that this was a "horribly perfect" pilgrimage. Everything that could go wrong did, but it all was necessary for my journey and turned out perfect in the end. :o)

For starters my flight out of Baltimore was delayed (5 hours) which caused me to miss all connecting flights. I honestly can’t remember whom I spoke with from 206tours that day (I was pretty emotional) but they were super. They were very professional and assured me all would be fine. Unfortunately, I arrived a day later than planned, but in all honesty it worked out okay. It was great. Although I missed the tour bus from Pau airport to Lourdes, 206tours provided me with a driver when I arrived. Although he did not speak any English, he was kind and we managed to communicate (a smile is a universal language). I had a mishap with my luggage (it did not make the flight to Pau) and the driver was able to help me provide the hotel information to the airport.

When I arrived to the hotel, the tour had already begun an excursion (which was completely fine) and the hotel staff got me settled in my room. Not wanting to waste a minute of my time, I dropped my carryon off in the room and then went right back to the lobby. I decided to venture out just a little to take in the narrow streets and the people. Shortly afterwards, Jesus, the tourguide, came and found me. He had been checking back frequently with the hotel waiting for my arrival. That was nice. He helped me join the tour in the Shrine. I immediately felt accepted in the tour group and all went well.

Lourdes was an incredibly spiritual place (without question). It was an incredible pilgramage and I am blessed to have traveled there. Jesus checked on me frequently (and my luggage – it did not arrive until Sunday night at 7:00pm and I was leaving Monday morning at 7:00am).

I do not fault 206tours at all for the misfortunes I encountered. I am truly grateful for all that you did to support me during those obstacles. It was a wonderful pilgrimage and I would recommend you to others. I am also looking forward to another pilgrimage in the future.

Thank you for a wonderful 1st experience.

God’s Blessings.

  • From: Susan Cryder
  • Sent: Sunday, May 19, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain, Lourdes & Medjugorje 2013105

Dear Rosalie,

The pilgrimage was just wonderful. I came back so spiritually full and overwhelmed at all the sites I saw and the holy places I visited. I must tell you that my tour guides were both excellent. I had the pleasure of meeting Jesus Vivas on my first 206 pilgrimage 3 years ago and he was personable, knowledgeable and very devout both times. He was an absolute pleasure to be with again. Father Wimsatt was a very special priest who was so sincere, spiritually uplifting and genuinely easy to talk to. His homilies impacted me with something so moving at every Mass. He was an absolute credit to the priesthood and an asset to this pilgrimage. I can’t say enough good things about my Fatima to Lourdes experience. I felt Our Blessed Mother’s presence in my heart each and every day. The Medjugorje experience was so different in pace but so appropriate. To end my travels with a more relaxed, less regimented schedule was perfect. Dragan was amazing in so many ways. I learned so much history but also saw the devotion that he had and it inspired me. Father Zacharias was very kind. We didn’t get spend much time with him, but he was truly a good, caring priest.

I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone at 206 who work so very, very hard to provide such well planned, efficient and most of all holy experiences. I traveled alone and always felt safe and that I was in expert hands that could take care of any situation. I marvel at the amount of know-how and logistics that go into planning these trips and I want to commend all who do their jobs so well. I am blessed to have had the chance to travel to these miraculous places and 206 made the experience something I will remember and hold in my heart forever. I came home with a renewed faith and the will to be a better ME through the help and intercession of Mary and her divine Son. Thank you to those of you who work behind the scenes to make these pilgrimages run smoothly while bringing faith filled experiences and life long wishes to fruition.
God bless you all.

With sincere thanks –

  • From: Fr. John
  • Sent: Saturday, May 18, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Lourdes & Medjugorje: May 9-17, 2013 2013106

Dear Rosalie DeFilippo,

Greetings from Fr. John, Rome. The experience as a Spiritual Director to the 206 group (Only to Medjugorje (13-17 May) was a special one for me personally and I hope for the group as well; we had a special opportunity to renew our faith at Medjugorje. When Maria, one of the visionaries, gave a talk in Italian and in Croatian language to a group of more than 4,000 people, the people were moved to see Mother Mary continues her cooperation in the mission of our Lord Jesus even today. The guide had translated the talk and thanks to him because he had also arranged a personal prayer service with her near her home. Weeping Cross is another testimony for Medjugorje to show that the Lord has taken this place as a special place to dispense His Grace to the penitents.

Thank you for the opportunity and I hope the group also enjoyed their pilgrimage. I assure my prayers for the success of the spiritual mission of 206 Tours.

In Christ,
Fr. John

  • From: Fr. White
  • Sent: Wednesday, May 15, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo & Rinda Kanidinc
  • Subject: Holy Land | May 4-13, 2013 2013107

Dear Rosalie, dear Rinda,
Peace of Christ. I write with great gratitude and joy to thank you and all at 206 Tours for such a graced pilgrimage to the Holy Land. It was amazing! Really!

The manner in which you organized all was superb. The preparation, your communication and quick and efficient replies to any and all questions, and once in country our accommodations, transportation, meals, combination of time visiting sights and time for rest and or personal prayer, and most especially the arrangements that were made that allowed us to have Mass at all of these holy sights–amazing!

Let me single out especially for praise and gratitude our tour guide Mr. Jack Hlais. He couldn’t have been better. His knowledge, devotion to the Holy Land and the sights, generosity, good humor, care, and gentleness–real, real graces and gifts. One example: he urged us to wake up on our last day for a 5:30 am Way of the Cross in Jerusalem prior to our 7 am Mass so that we would be able to pray the Stations of the Cross in preparation for the Eucharist there at Calvary in as much peace and recollection as is possible on the streets of Jerusalem. The earlier we came, the greater peace and quiet we would have on the streets. Yet, this meant that he, too, would have to get up at 4:30 in the morning to join us! Most generous and thoughtful. Even the other tour guides while in the Holy Land would tell us that we have the best! He was the teacher of many of them. You are blessed to have him; we were blessed to have him!

The group of pilgrims was another gift and we all agreed that the community of pilgrims we formed quickly was another grace received. I could go on and on, Rosalie and Rinda…. It was an amazing time and pilgrimage. I remain most grateful to you and to all at 206 Tours for such a great gift and opportunity.

Since you asked I have 1, very small invitation for you to consider: We supplemented the song book with some simple Taize songs which you may want to consider including. For example, we sang "Jesus, remember me, when you come into your kingdom," and "Were you there when they crucified my Lord?" between stations. These and other simple, common songs might be a nice addition to your song book.

Thank you again very, very much for this opportunity to serve and accompany this wonderful pilgrimage. I would very much like to serve again as a spiritual director. Let us remain in touch. Again with deep gratitude,

Yours, in Christ,

Fr. White

  • From: Antonio Filio
  • Sent: Wednesday, May 15, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima: May 4-11, 2013 2013108

Dear Ms. Rosalie,
We want to thank you and 206 Tours for taking care and helping us fulfill one our lifelong dreams, to go on a pilgrimage tour to Fatima, Portugal. This was the experience of a lifetime that my wife and I will never ever forget. The whole tour from beginning to end was informative, educational, emotional and very spiritual. Because of this pilgrimage tour my faith as a Catholic has been strengthened. Our tour guide Jose was very knowledgeable and spoke English fluently. He has the perfect personality and attitude for a tour guide. Father Mike Wimsatt was the best and coolest priest ever. All of the other people on this tour were very friendly and funny. My wife and I really had a wonderful time.

Thanks again Ms. Rosalie and to 206 Tours. We will recommend 206 to all of our family and friends.

Sonny and Lynn Filio

  • From: Miriam Serano
  • Sent: Thursday, May 2, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land | April 7-16, 2013 2013111

Our trip was exceptional!! We all had a great time and a great spiritual journey. Joseph, our tour guide was very knowledgeable. He took us early to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, and we hit no lines going into the tomb of Christ. I have been there before and the line was incredible. But Joseph got us there early, and we were very happy.

I enjoyed traveling with your tour company. I am thinking of going to Medjugorge in June with Fr. Peter from Greenlawn, LI. Thank you for a great pilgrimage!

God Bless,
Miriam Serano

  • From: Susan
  • Sent: Wednesday, May 1, 2013
  • To: Yaritza Rodriguez
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Cascia & Rome | April 15-25, 2013 2013109

Dear Yaritza,

THe trip far exceeded my expectations.  Each time I visit Italy it gets better and better.  The trip was so well planned and having time on our own was such a pleasure.  The hotel in Rome was beautiful.  I had a king size bed all to myself. And the rooftop terrace was a bonus!!! I would highly recommend it.  It was so convenient to walking to the Vatican and so many excellent restaurants and stores nearby.

Cascia is just beautiful.  I think we may have been the first group of pilgrims there this season.  For a few days we had the whole place to ourselves.  Not many tours go to Cascia but I would highly recommend it.

Once again 206 did an excellent job in planning and expediting out journey.

Thank you so much for all the work you did to make it such a success.


  • From: Angelica Perez
  • Sent: Friday, April 26, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Paris & Rome: April 12-19, 2013 2013112

Arriving on April 13th with little sleep was a bit rough. Next time we will arrive a day earlier and relax and get ready for the tour. Paris was great. Jesus, our tour manager, was very attentive. We had a special tour that included lunches and a nice lunch at le maurice. Jesus knew nothing about it, but informed us that he would take care of it and he did. The hotel was great. Our tour included a 5 star or similar and I would say it was.

The second half of our trip was in Rome. Karin has so much energy and really knows how to stay on track. I enjoyed her attention to detail. The hotel we stayed in was nice, but not a five star or similar. I will definetly use 206 tour for my future travels.

Thank you,
Angelica Perez

  • From: Rosalinda Ursua
  • Sent: Tuesday, April 23, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Guadalupe 2013113

The experience was defintely an inspiring and spiritually enriching experience. The tour guide, Elvira Ayala, was a master of her trade. She was engaging and knowledgeable. All the sites included in the five-day pilgrimage were made significant by her giving the pilgrims clear and concise orientation of their religious meanings and how those sites affect the residents of the community as well as their influence on the growth of the community’s governance, politically and religiously. The hotel accommodation was very good. The schedule of activity was well planned although there were a couple of places where the cathedral was closed when we got there after a long and winding walk up a hill. The food served in some of the restaurants for lunch was not as good as we expected. Ms. Elvira Ayala and Mr. Roberto as well as the driver, Mayolo were great in executing their respective responsibilities. Overall, I would recommend 206 Tours to my family and friends after this experience in Mexico.

Rosalinda V. Ursua
Benicia, CA

  • From: Frida Callejas
  • Sent: Monday, April 22, 2013
  • To: Yaritza Rodriguez
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land with Fr. Orlando Gomez & Fr. Juan Perez ~ April 8-17, 2013 2013114

Good morning Yaritza,

Our beloved group is back from pilgrimage with great joy, filled with blessings and appreciation for the wonderful experience we had. I want to thank 206 Tours’ staff for all the tremendous work you did for group; it was “first class service” in all aspects: hotel, meals, transportation, our daily visits etc. Most important, I want to commence 206 Tours for choosing top services for all their travelers, especially for having wonderful tour guides such as Ramzi Ghattas. He was very knowledgeable in the catholic faith and history; Ramzi’s care and services exceeded our expectations!!

Our hotel in Tel Avid was beautiful, what I would love to consider for the future is to possibly add an extra day to rest and enjoy the beautiful beach and surroundings. In a few weeks I will be sending you pictures, right now I have a lot of catching up to do =)

Finally, as the result of your outstanding service we would love to plan a Marian Pilgrimage for 2014!!

Hope your life is full of His blessings, always!
Frida Callejas

  • From: Kelly Rogers
  • Sent: Friday, April 19, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Fr. Joe Dygert - The Holy Land 2013115


I can’t say enough about this experience. It was such a blessing in my life. We were so blessed to have Habib as our guide. Words cannot express how wonderful he was. Not only is he a walking encyclopedia about the history of Israel and the Bible, he went above and beyond everyday to make sure we never missed a sight even when the schedule was tight. Such a wonderful, sweet and faithful man. Likewise Feris was fabulous. They were a great team. We were very surprised they had never worked together before because they worked so well together. If I am ever able to return to Israel they would be the team I wanted to guide me through this faith walk again.

Kelly Rogers

  • From: Dennis Doran
  • Sent: Thursday, April 18, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain, Lourdes & Medjugorje 2013116

Hi Rosalie,

We had a wonderful, special and holy pilgrimage! It was the best way to celebrate our 30th Wedding Anniversary.
We especially loved our 206 Tour Guides (Jesus Vivas and Slavica Marincic).
Our priest was very special as well (Fr. Damien Schill).
The bonus with Fr. Damien is that he lives in our city and we will get to see him at home.
I would recommend this tour to anyone interested in these special places.
Attached is a picture of us with our tour guide and fellow pilgrims on Apparition mountain in Medugorje.

Thanks for your service to the many pilgrims!

Dennis and Patti Doran

  • From: Gregory
  • Sent: Thursday, April 18, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Fr. Joe Dygert - Holy Land Pilgrimage 2013117


Trip was very rewarding and the guide was second to none.

Humble, helpful and knowledgeable.

Best Regards,

  • From: Allen Harvey
  • Sent: Wednesday, April 17, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Welcome Home! | Pilgrimage to the Holy Land | April 7-16, 2013 2013118

Dear Ms. DeFilippo,

I just returned last night and I have to say that this was the best and most meaningful trips I’ve been on. It was outstanding and exceeded my expectations! Exploring the origins of our faith – seeing the actual sites – was so meaningful to me. In particular, our guide Joseph, was the best. I can’t imagine anyone doing a better job than he did. This was an absolute 5 star trip! A suggestion: not to take away anything from the pilgrimage, and this is not a criticism, I suggest you might consider having two types of groups, a more active and a less active group. We found that there was quite a mixture of physical and mental abilities in our group, everything from a couple of young, athletic men to an older woman in a wheelchair and an older women with memory problems. While this is part of the journey (and I took pleasure in helping the ones who needed help), it might be helpful to bifurcate these people. The younger, more active, were eager to go at a fast pace with longer journeys (walking / hiking) while the others seemed physically and mentally exhausted after a short time. Thank you for setting up this pilgrimage. It’s a trip I will never forget.

Allen Harvey

  • From: Fr. Paul
  • Sent: Wednesday, April 17, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land | April 7-16, 2013 2013110

Hi Rosalie,

As far as I am concerned the trip was just fabulous!!!!!!!!!!!!
I like all of the hotels, food, tour guides and plans for each day.

Fr. Paul

  • From: Mary Jo Garraty
  • Sent: Tuesday, April 16, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Re: Welcome Home! | Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain & Lourdes: April 4-13, 2013 2013119

Dear Rosalie,

I am still in the peaceful state of being that filled me during our pilgrimage. Even a two hour wait upon return to get through customs could not dampen the joy of our experience. Everything was efficiently coordinated; transfers were flawless; accommodations were excellent. Our driver, Michael was courteous and professional. Most importantly, I always felt safe when he drove.

Jesus Vivas, our tour guide, was knowledgeable, helpful, friendly and kind. He would often go out of his way to make sure our smallest needs were met. Dealing with a diverse group of individuals can be challenging and he always did so with a sincere smile. His faith is evident. He is a true gentle man. If I would ever have a chance to go on another tour, and hopefully I will, I would confirm that Mr. Vivas was the guide assigned.

Father Damien Schill added a depth of spirituality that I never would have known if I had gone on a pilgrimage alone. His words brought tears to my eyes and joy to my heart. I wish I could have taped his homilies as I do not want to forget the lessons he taught with wisdom and humor.

I have been gushing to everyone about our tour, our guide, our spiritual director, our wonderful experience. I have and will continue to recommend 206 tours. Thank You

Attached is my favorite picture of our trip, the hands of Maria dos Anghos, niece of Lucia, taken in Fatima.
It was an honor to met her, an experience that will stay with me always.

Mary Jo Garraty


  • From: Dyann Andersen
  • Sent: Monday, April 15, 2013
  • To: Carol Cassano
  • Subject: Medjugorje Pilgrimage with Wayne Weible 2013120

Dear Carol,

Thank you for your interest in how I feeel about my Medjugorje trip. It was without a doubt an experience I will never forget!! The whole team, including those working for and with Wayne Weible we just the greatest! Mary, Wayne’s assistant, Fr. Bryan Carney, they were all just great. Especially Slavenka!! What a gem you have with her!!!

As for negative remarks, during the stay my friend and roommate, Dorothy Westermann, and I did notice a few things, but obviously they were not worth writing about or otherwise I would have contacted you.

I will be sending others now, through your tour company, to Medjugorje and will thell them of the wonderful experiences I had. We all had!! I certainly do NOT mind if you share any photos or info. I will send some as soon as I get a chance. (I am fighting a nasty cold and I think it is winning!). Yaritza was absolutely wonderful in arranging our accomadations. Everything flowed smoothly. Thank you again for the wonderful experience. (p.s. I experienced several miracles while there, especially having my hearing restored after 30 years of being totally deaf in my left ear!!

Dyann Andersen

  • Sent: Monday, April 1, 2013
  • To:
  • Subject: Easter Greetings 2013121

I have to tell you, as an agency owner since 76 I have never seen such nice documents ( along with VIKING and SEABOURN of course ) as those that just arrived for my booking # 409119 the other booking went directly to the client saving me a mailing…THANK YOU you have done a superb job and I am so happy I was able to meet your staff at the OSSN show that one year Happy Belated EASTER and hope we can do more with you.

Jan Paytas, PTANA, CTC, DS
World Wide Consolidated Travel Services, Inc.

  • From: Fr. Joe Mundakal
  • Sent: Thursday, March 28, 2013
  • To: Milanka Lachman
  • Subject: Blessed Triduum 2013 208

Hi Dear Milanka,

Thank you so much for remembering me in your prayers! This Lent has been very special Lent with our Holy Father Benedict XVI retiring and the election of the new Pope!

Milanka and Rinda, and the whole 206 Tours, have been in my thoughts and prayers, particularly these past several months. The way you recognized me, honored me and loved me, in so many ways, especially your generosity in giving me so many Pilgrimages, are very special and very fresh in my mind! Since 1997 there hasn’t been an year without you giving me a Pilgrimage to lead! Quite often, I just look at these name tags hanging in my room and remember and pray for you and the 206 Tours, and all the Pilgrims. Sometimes some Pilgrims thankfully remind me about our Pilgrimage and ask for some prayers or some guidance, is a reminder for me that how much those Pilgrimages meant to them too! I know I do not have to mention this to you, because you hear this always from thousands! Praise God!

I am sure you will continue to remember me in your prayers, but still I want to ask your prayers as I am completing my 30 years as a priest this May! May the Joy and Peace of His Resurrection be with you and your family always!

Sincerely in Christ,

Fr. Joe Mundakal

  • From: Mary G. Hodgson
  • Sent: Tuesday, March 26, 2013
  • To:
  • Subject: Holy Land tour 111 2013123

Finally settling down after my pilgrimage to the Holy Land (Mar 10-17, 2013). I cannot give enough praise to Usama Salman, our guide. Having him as our guide, was like having a week long bible study. His knowledge was amazing and his patience phenomenal. His passion for making Jesus come alive to all the pilgrims was evident in everything he said. This was my second trip to Israel and I learned more from him in one day than I did the entire previous trip with another guide. On a scale of 1 to 5, he rated a 10! All in all, I would definitely recommend 206 tours to the Holy land, especially if Usama were leading the group. Please pass on my thanks to him for making my trip such a fantastic experience.

Our bus driver also went above and beyond to be helpful, and his driving skills kept me comfortable and not biting my nails as I tend to be a “back seat driver”. Kudos to him!

Our itinerary was very strenuous but worth every moment. My one disappointment was with the restaurant that served “St. Peter’s” fish. The whole fish was too dry and the fish fillets were oily (I had a change to try both.). It would have been better if they had not fried it so early. What a waste of good fish. Everyone else at the table had the same complaint.

It was amazing having 4 priests with us: Fr. Salvo with our group and three others with the group that joined ours. Having them concelebrating Mass at the different sites was such a blessing. Fr. Salvo’s readings from the Bible at each site and Usama’s background information, made everything so much more meaningful. Fantastic trip and something I will always remember.

Mary Hodgson

  • From: Judy Canclini
  • Sent: Tuesday, March 26, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Lynn Hoffman | Medjugorje with overnight in Frankfurt | March 2013 2013122

Dear Amanda,

Our pilgrimage to Medjugorje couldn’t have been nicer!! Lynn Hoffman and 206 couldn’t have provided a more well planned trip. Everything went off without a hitch as far as I was concerned. Our accommodations were the BEST!! The owners were delightful and couldn’t have been more cordial. Anything we asked for was granted immediately. The food was fabulous and the people in this village were unbelievably nice. Our overnight stay in Frankfurt was delightful too and I would recommend this pilgrimage to anyone. Thanks again Amanda for a fabulous trip!!

Judy Canclini

  • From: Dan Dougherty
  • Sent: Monday, March 25, 2013
  • To:
  • Subject: Holy Land –March 2013 2013124

Dear Usama,

I would like to thank you for your outstanding tour of the Holy Land. I learned a great deal about the area that I did not know previously. You have opened my eyes. As far as the Religious sites, I was enlightened by your insights pertaining to all the places we visited. My Catholic Faith has been strengthened by this pilgrimage. I will encouraged my fellow Catholics in the U.S. to use 206 Tours for their pilgrimage. If they are Blessed, they will get you for their Tour Guide.

If you ever need to visit Florida, you have a place to stay at my home. I will have a very fine scotch prepared for you.

God Bless you and your family.

Daniel Dougherty

  • Sent: Friday, March 22, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Italy 2013125

Dear Ms. DeFilippo,

Because of privacy policies that Facebook recently instituted, I no longer sign on. However below are some of my thoughts on our tour.

Our trip was terrific. Our accommodations were simple but adequate and in an extremely convenient part of Rome overlooking the Vatican. The Lufthanza and Swiss flights were far more comfortable than most of our US carriers. However our stopover time in Zurich on our flight over was not adequate. We had about an hour in which to go through security and then customs. Both had long lines and we were 15 minutes late for our second flight. Amazingly they held it for us, something I have not encountered in the US for years.
The itinerary was well planned and able to be modified as conditions changed, something that was necessary because of the Marathon and the Papal Installation coincided on same day, same time. Our prayer services were simple, beautiful, and moving. Lyn Osiek is a terrific scholar who shared info readily. Chris Schenk was a great organizer, very knowledgeable, down to earth and approachable. Gaia is a phenomenal guide, extremely resouceful, and oh so generous with her time. I have never had a better one and can’t even imagine one.

By sheer coincidence the unexpected papal election made this an especially memorable trip.

Kate Barry

  • From: Margo & Russ
  • Sent: Friday, March 22, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land - March 10, 2013 2013126

Dear Rosalie,

Our pilgrimage to the Holy Land was an incredible ‘journey’ beginning with our arrival in Tel Aviv, Israel, on March 11, 2013, to our departure on March 19, 2013.

Usama, our tour guide, was most knowledgeable and thorough in his explanation of all the holy sites we visited. Abid, the tour driver, whose help facilitated our pilgrimage by having my mom’s wheelchair available, when and where needed, was invaluable.
We would be remiss if we didn’t give ‘kudos’ to Brian and Brenda Flannery, the tour directors/coordinators, who went above and beyond the ‘call of duty’ to make this wonderful pilgrimage, to the Holy Land, one we will never forget!

Our Spiritual Directors (Leaders), Father Brian E. Jeffries, Father Enrique Salvo, and Father Lourduraj Alapaty, and with the assistance of Franciscan Friar, Father (Drezak)? provided us with the spiritual guidance and meditation that is a requisite for this moving experience.

God willing, we will be able to join 2006 tours on another of their pilgrimages…

Thank you, Rosalie, and sincerely,

Margo Jo and Russell Joseph O’Connor, Jr.

  • From: Betty Pearson
  • Sent: Wednesday, March 20, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land 2013127

Thank you for a wonderful pilgrimage we enjoyed it very much the first plane we had to fly in was much too small and uncomfortable for the price we paid we were little disappointed have the Sea of Galilee s house see wasn’t quite up to our standards I guess!!! Really like their tour guide he was fun to be with a very knowledgeable Loved all the places you chose to show usX Really would have liked to have had more of a direct flight and waiting at the airport WAS areal pain for us! love to be with Carmelhaving her waiting for me at the airport fly all the way there together seats together was awesome for us!I still don’t have my luggage called United there checkn it out now! Liked all the priests awesome group tooIt was over the top thank you


Betty Pearson

  • From: Sonny Ungson
  • Sent: Tuesday, March 19, 2013
  • To: Amanda Fortunato
  • Subject: Lynn Hoffman | Medjugorje with overnight in Frankfurt | March 2013 2013128

Dear Amanda,

Thank you to 206 tours for arranging our pilgrimage to Medugorje with Lynn Hoffman, and for arranging Lourdes Beltran’s last minute booking. It was such a wonderful experience, pleasant and spiritually enriching. We enjoyed this group as we’re like brothers and sisters looking after each other.

Lynn Hoffman took good care of us, always sharing her thoughts and her broad experience in Meduorje. She always make a head count to make sure that no one is missing.

Our hosts, Dragica and Marinko, together with Dado and the cook were so welcoming. They let us feel like we’re home away from home. The dining is always open even in the middle of the night, with fruits, bread, ham and cheese, coffee and tea. I think we all gained weight!

Our tour guide, Slavenka speaks very good English, she knows all the details of Medugorje’s Apparitions. Highly recommended! She’s well known by the visionaries too!

We felt so blessed to have met Vicka, the visionary, who shared the messages of the Virgin Mary to us, with Slavenka as interpreter.
The only thing that the group missed on this trip was an encounter with an actual apparition which we were looking for. Slavenka made an effort though to schedule with one of the visionaries, but I guess they were not available.

Overall, this trip was superb!

Wishing you a Blessed and Happy Easter!


Feliciano, Elizabeth & Marianne

  • From: Julia De La Cruz
  • Sent: Thursday, March 7, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Lourdes & Rome 2013129

Ms. DeFilippo, our pilgrimage to Lourdes and Rome was wonderful. The tour guides we had, Javier Gomez
in Lourdes and Simona in Rome were just wonderful. They not only showed us the sites, but they gave us much more information on these sites, information that a regular tour guide would never think to share.

They each had a "Guide in Training". In Lourdes it was Alejandro and in Rome it was Maria Graciela. Again, they are being trained by the best, so they both were wonderful.

We had two pilgrims in Lourdes who required the use of a wheel chair. During the Way of the Cross, much help was needed with the wheel chairs. If it had not been for Javier’s and Alejandro’s help they would not have made it. They took it upon themselves to ensure that we were all able to see everything. They were just wonderful.

Javier and Alejandro also purchased a candle for our group, posted our intentions, and we took the candle to Lourdes in our own procession…very moving. Our candle should still be burning at Lourdes, a satisfying thought now that we’re home.

Javier had dinner with us each night, each night at a different table. That was very special, he truly made us feel like family.

Simona was very good to us as well. She showed us as many sites, beyond what was on our itinerary, as she possibly could in the time we had. Her knowledge of Rome and the Vatican City was amazing, as was Javier’s in Lourdes.

Thank you so much. Because of our wonderful experience on this pilgrimage, our next pilgrimage will be with 206 Tours.

Here are a couple of pictures. You may use them anyway you like.

Julia and Vicente De La Cruz
Albuquerque, NM

Thank you,
Julia De La Cruz

  • From: Kathleen Frampton
  • Sent: Saturday, March 2, 2013
  • To:
  • Subject: Guadalupe, Mexico City and Riviera Maya (February 6-15, 2013) 2013130

Dear Rosalie,

My husband and I recently returned from our pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mexico City and the Riviera Maya and it was wonderful. The trip exceeded our expectations on every level! Reverend Thomas Ganley, our pilgrimage Spiritual Director, is a holy, charismatic priest who is very congenial and exudes joy in his priestly vocation. It was a blessing having him accompany our tour group.

Our Tour Escort while in Mexico, Elvira Ayala, is very professional, accommodating and extremely
knowledgeable on all aspects of our tour sites – Mexican culture, history (both secular and religious) and art/architecture.

The tour was well organized to include two trips to the Our Lady of Guadelupe Shrine along with other basilicas in Mexico that were spectacular examples of Mexican Baroque design – truly breathtaking. Both my husband and I were glad that after we saw the highlights in Mexico City, we were able to explore other key areas of the country – i.e., Tlaxcala, Puebla and the Mayan ruins. We felt like we got a good initial overview of the diversity of these geographical areas.

Our 4 day add-on to the Riviera Maya was also a great experience. We stayed at the all-inclusive Wyndham Maya and had great accommodations, food selection and gorgeous beaches to enjoy – overall a great value. I know that many Americans are hesitant to travel to Mexico because of safety concerns, but the areas we visited were extremely safe with great security and police presence. Many thanks to 206 Tours for planning an excellent itinerary!

Kathleen K. Frampton

  • From: Msgr Hilary
  • Sent: Friday, March 1, 2013
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Holy Land 2013131

Dear Liz,

Thank you so much for your gracious message I just received. We would like to express our gratitude for the optimal service provided by you personally and by the organization of 206 Tours to our 27 pilgrims. It was indeed, a blessing for all of us to be in the Holy Land at this time, and to experience firsthand the presence of the Lord in his earthly abodes.
Please extend our thanks to all those who were involved in the preparation of our Pilgrimage and to our guide, Mr. Rimon, who did an excellent job.

God love you!

Msgr Hilary

  • From: Leona Foos
  • Sent: Sunday, February 24, 2013
  • To: Rosalie DeFilippo
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Lourdes & Rome 2013132

Dear Rosalie,

The trip was great. Our guide at Lourdes was "Juaviera) spelling? was extra special, the food plentyful and delicious, the hotels , beds and personel the best. Enjoyed shareing with other tourists. The Basilicas, shrines, grottos and all other stops on our tour were spectactluar.

Also enjoyed Italy but it was too much too fast for me and my wheelchair. Also was stressed out at the too fast connection in Atlanta too Paris, barely made it, the plane was loading and ready for departure as we arrived.

Thank You,

Leona Foos

PS Will keep your address if the Miracles we requested will be answered will let you know.

  • From: Dennis Maldonado
  • Sent: Thursday, February 21, 2013
  • To:
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain & Lourdes: February 9-18 2013133

Hi Ms. DeFilippo,

This trip was given to me by my beautiful wife as a birthday gift. It was the first time that we were visiting Europe. Although I was a little nervous, I left it in the hand of our Holy Father Jesus Christ. The trip was an experience of a lifetime ! I will definitely recommend it to all my fellow parishioners at Our Lady of Lorretto Church in New York.

As I’m sure you heard by now, Javier was wonderful. He was extremely informative, caring and patient. He answered every question without hesitation and it was a pleasure to see someone whom does his job with great pride and pleasure. He really made us feel like a family and I will always be grateful for that. Alessandro was also a great influence to the enjoyment, knowledge and comfort to us all on the trip. He also showed a lot of passion which I highly admired.

I wish to Thank both men for the wonderful experience that my wife and I share with our Blessed Mother and I wish to thank 206 Tours for having these two great men on their staff. I look forward to the next pilgrimage ! Hopefully it will be guided by Javier and Alessandro. They are truly by far " THE BEST " !!!!!!!!!!

God Bless !

Dennis Maldonado

  • From: Pauline Micek
  • Sent: Tuesday, January 29, 2013
  • To: 206 Tours
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land: January 4 – 14, 2013 2013134

206 Tours is the BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!! This trip was a surprise trip given to us from our children for our 40th wedding anniversary. They knew we read and listened to Dr.Scott and Kimberly Hahn. Beautiful couple! We also got to renew our wedding vow!! Kenny had wanted to go to the Holy Land many times and I would tell him to take another family member and I would look at his pictures. There is absolutely nothing that takes the place of being there in person. The bible and rosary become ALIVE!! God continue to bless our family and 206 Tour family along with all who travel with them abundant graces to follow Gods call and especially our Catholic Priests and Religious. Thanks to all of you!! You tour guides and drivers were the BEST! Thanks Dr. Scott and Kimberly for saying YES! We love all of you!"


  • From: Aw Tutoring
  • Sent: Wednesday, January 23, 2013
  • To: Yaritza
  • Subject: Holy Land with Dr. Scott & Kimberly Hahn, January 414, 213 2013135

Dear Yaritza,

My apologies for the length of time it has taken me to reply. I arrived from Hong Kong three days ago and have been busy with work as you can imagine. You and Milanka and all the 206 organisers were wonderful on the trip. It is the best tour I have been on, everything was so beautifully organised, the accomodation and the food, so much food and all of it delicious, one felt quite thoroughly spoilt. It was a blessing to meet so many pilgrims who have become so dear to me now. I have been recommending to many people your company.

It was an amazing experience to be in the Holy Land, a pilgrimage like no other. Surprisingly, I felt there an absence, but a good absence. I went to the Holy Land expecting to feel the Lord’s presence in a more special way but when I was there realised that when I am at adoration before the Blessed Sacrament exposed in the monstrance, I feel His presence in a much stonger way. The Holy Land gave me a deeper love for the sacraments, it is Our Lord’s way of remaining with us until the end of time.

However, lectio divina has never been so virant and alive. When one hears the Gospels read and one has just recently been there, how easy it is to meditate and immerse in the Scriptures, the Word comes alive. This is like a pearl of great price. What an extraordinary grace to be in the Holy Land for this reason alone. Dr Scott and Kimberly Hahn’s lectures was the cherry on top of an exquisite dish.

So once again, thank you, this will be an experience which I will always cherish and bring with me as I re-enter the enclosed garden of monastic life. I shall always keep Milanka, yourself and all your colleagues, guides and pilgrims in my prayers and pray that many hearts will draw ever closer to the Sacred Heart and to the Heart of His Immaculate Mother through the ministry which has been given you.

Your sister in Christ,

Mother Marilla OSB
(alias Sr Carolyn)

  • From: Hubka Family
  • Sent: Friday, January 18, 2013
  • To: 'Rinda Kanidinc'
  • Subject: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land: December 27 - January 5, 2013 2013136

Hello Rinda,

How do we even start giving you feedback? I guess by saying that we were generally positively overwhelmed by the entire experience, and are extremely pleased overall with 206 Tours. You seemed to have things well covered in pretty much all ways. We feel we got a quality pilgrimage at a satisfactory price. Knowing what we know now, if we had a chance and could do it all over again, we would emphatically say YES, and probably the only thing we would do differently is have even more enthusiasm in recruiting others.

One absolutely outstanding thing was our tour guide, Nabil Qurt. What a great guy and a super guide! Our family has been on 5-10 guided tours like this before (although this was the first of them that was a pilgrimage), and we have to say that Nabil was the most personable and outstanding tour guide we have ever had.

We were also extremely pleased with our spiritual director, Monsignor Cahalane – what a holy and humble shepherd. He helped break open the Word so exceptionally well and guided us to a deeper understanding of all the sites we visited.

The 3 hotels we stayed at were also of top quality. And all the meals were excellent. No complaints on any of those things.

As far as things that 206 Tours could have done better, there are just a few things that we will mention. (And we want to emphasize that these are very minor negative comments – we are 99.9% positive on the entire tour.)

– In the hotel lobby on the morning of our departure, we were given certificates attesting to our visit. These were very nice – nice enough to frame and hang up. But unfortunately, they were given to us AFTER we had packed our suitcases.
– Another minor item was selection of travel bags. We were not given choice to the style of our 206 Tours travel bags. Thus we were surprised on arrival to see that there appeared to be 4 different styles of 206 Tours travel bags. We have attached 3 pictures from our pilgrimage. You are welcome to share them for future trip promotions.

We would love to encourage families to make this pilgrimage together.

Dave Hubka

  • From: Yang Sciscent
  • Sent: Friday, January 18, 2013
  • To: Yaritza
  • Subject: Holy Land with Dr. Scott & Kimberly Hahn, January 4-14, 2013 2013137

Dear Yaritza,

Thank you very much for your email and your beautiful thoughts! I cannot thank you and the team enough for the precious experience I have had through this pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Your dedicated work and good coordination made every day, and in fact every activity meaningful and enjoyable to me. Although we had rainy days and walking days that I would expect some people might feel less enthusiastic, I never heard any complain during the entire trip. I think it’s a miracle that Americans don’t complain, especially the senior citizens! And miracle happened due to your team effort!

Personally I am very flexible in terms of lodging and food, as long as the learning aspect of the trip is satisfied. But as a result, I found great satisfaction in every aspect of the trip, especially in learning and sharing. Many thanks for your efforts!

I will contribute pictures in about 2 weeks, since my husband took the camera and iPad on his trip to Vietnam. I would also wish you continued success and hope someday in the near future we the NY group could get together soon!

Keep well and God bless!

  • From: jackie alcantara
  • Sent: Thursday, January 17, 2013
  • To: Yaritza; Sandra Savic-Lippold
  • Subject: Holy Land with Dr. Scott & Kimberly Hahn 2013138

Hi Yaritza!
My trip was simply the most well organized and spiritually enriching ever! It’s my first experience joining a 206 tour and I’m beyond impressed! Thanks to everyone in 206 for ensuring everyone’s safety and comfort, for keeping a positive attitude through the most challenging and unexpected situations, and for remaining focused on the pilgrimage aspect.

I guess the only aspect I found a bit out of context was the bahai gardens (lovely though) & the boat museum. Or perhaps this was just a contingency plan because of weather or scheduling concerns. Would personally have preferred to stay in church & spent the time in quiet meditation.

Everyone was most kind & helpful. Giovanni & Nazhee are rare gems! Giovanni’s warmth & attention to each one in the green bus despite his father’s illness is truly heroic. Nazhee’s quiet but steady disposition proved most comforting under difficult driving situations.

Thanks again for a very memorable experience. I hope my whole family can go next time!


  • From: Anielyn Delicana
  • Sent: Wednesday, January 9, 2013
  • To:
  • Subject: Thank You 2013139

Dear Rosalie,

Greetings of Christ’s love and joy!

The pilgrimage last December 27, 2012 – January 5, 2013 was indeed a renewal and a deepening of my faith relationship with God. I was thankful for the opportunity that was given to me to see the placse where Jesus was born, grew up, have preached and where he was crucified and died.

The entire pilgrimage is a successful one – spiritually, emotionally and logistically.
I commend the efforts and sacrifices, you and your staff and all the people working in 206 Tours in making the pilgrimage a meaningful and an "awesome" one.You did a great job in planning and arranging everything for the convenient of everybody who joined the pilgrimage.

Indeed, God is working to all who joined in the pilgrimage; it is really a gathering of people from different parts of the world simply showing that peace and unity is still possible in the world amidst of war.
Also, I would like to congratulate our tour guide Nabil who was patient with us, pilgrims. He explains very well the sites we visited and we feel at home with him. He is energetic and enthusiastic to share with us the things he knows – very informative. He goes down to the details of what he is telling us. Thank you also for providing us a bus driver who drives us safely to our destination. You have chosen the best people to make our day lively as we walk in the footsteps of Jesus.

To Monsignor Cahalane, he is really a very, very very good father to all of us by nourishing us spiritually with reflections in the bus and during the Eucharistic Celebration; also the sharings and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

Thank you again Rosalie and all the staff of 206tours.

You are all a blessing to me and to all people who experience the caring and loving services you have shown to your customers.

May the God of all consolations and blessings be your reward!

with my prayers,
Sr. Anielyn, SPC