Nearly 250 island residents packed their bags for the pilgrimage to the canonization of Mother Marianne.
On Tuesday, residents of the Kalaupapa settlement made their way to Hale Mohalu in Kaimuki in preparation for the pilgrimage. Two others are already on Oahu, gearing for Friday's departure.
"I think it's very special for all of us," said Kalaupapa patient Ivy Kahikihiwa.
"It's something we can represent and bring home to Kalaupapa and all of us who have gone before," said Kalaupapa patient Boogie Kahikihiwa.
First stop -- Syracuse, N.Y., where KITV has been granted exclusive permission to live with the sisters of St. Francis in Mother Marianne's convent. Here her remains lie in a reliquary at St. Anthony's Chapel.
On Oct. 16, on to Rome and a papal audience. It's deja vu for pilgrims on St. Damien's trip three years ago.
"And now we have our second one, so it is extremely rare, extremely remarkable," said Bishop Larry Silva.
Two saints in three years? Could the valleys of Kalaupapa have been fertile ground for the good works of a third Hawaii Saint? Our Vatican sources say yes.