Some 35,000 people are on pilgrimage to the Shrine of Fatima. This is according to the website of the Sanctuary, which announced the news on the eve of the 13 May Feast. There are 1,700 people (including doctors and nurses) providing assistance to pilgrims in 72 places and 12 mobile teams spread across several locations. Approximately 25,000 pilgrims are coming from the north while 10,000 are coming from the southern regions of Portugal. On 12-13 May, Fatima will also welcome the international pilgrimage, a year after the celebration of the centenary which saw Pope Francis visiting the Marian Sanctuary. Leading the pilgrimage will be Cardinal John Tong, Bishop Emeritus of Hong Kong. “We wanted an Asian bishop to come to Fatima”, because “Asia is the axis on which the Christian world walks”, said the Bishop of Leiria-Fatima, Mgr. Antonio Marto, stressing the affection and devotion that these pilgrims show. For this special weekend, in addition to the traditional celebrations and Marian devotions, a thanksgiving recital will be held to mark the anniversary of the apparitions on 13 May. It will feature Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli, French pianist Elisabeth Sombart, and Ukrainian violinist Anastasyia Petryshak.