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The final preparations are in full swing

The varied programme offers church services, spiritual offerings, art and culture for young and old

It will be a great celebration: after nine years, the shrines will be removed from the shrine of Mary on 9 June. This marks the beginning of the Aachen Pilgrimage. More than 100,000 pilgrims are expected during the ten days of the pilgrimage. “The pilgrimage to the shrine is a place of community, for worship and prayer, of culture and, above all, of encounter – with God, with oneself and with other people from all over the world,” invites Aachen Cathedral Provost and pilgrimage leader Rolf-Peter Cremer. Visitors can expect a varied programme for young and old with numerous highlights.

The final preparations for the pilgrimage are in full swing. “The associations’ tent is being set up on the market square, the Caritas pilgrimage rest stop on Münsterplatz, and the info points will follow next week,” says Nadine Braun, who is pulling all the strings in terms of organisation. The drinking water fountains (Katschhof, Münsterplatz) will also be installed soon; they provide pilgrims with free water. “The drinking water fountains are part of our Heifa pro climate concept. Because we want to make the shrine pilgrimage as sustainable as possible,” emphasises the 26-year-old. This includes a whole bundle of measures: from C0² compensation to green electricity and regional food.

Even the altar stage, which is currently being built on the Katschhof, is largely made of reusable materials. This is where the daily pilgrimage services take place. In the evenings, the approximately 250 square metre stage becomes a discovery stage. “During the planning, it was always clear that the stage would primarily serve the services,” emphasises Marco Sievert, eventac. Nevertheless, it can be used multifunctionally and is also well suited for the cultural programme. The back wall of the stage consists of a 15×3 metre LED screen. “The biggest TV in town, so to speak,” says Sievert. The raising and closing ceremonies are also broadcast on this.

In addition to the cultural programme on the discovery stage, there will be a small but fine programme on the stage in the courtyard in the afternoons and evenings. Under the motto “Klangfarben” (Colours of Sound), mainly regional artists will be represented there. From rock to jazz, from klezmer to ska, from acapella groups to large choirs, there is something for everyone. So there is also a lot to discover in the Aachen music scene.