How to come on A Pilgrimage In 2018

 What you are planning for your vacation next year? Could 2018 be the year to do something exceptional and special? Something that will refresh and reinvigorate you physically AND spiritually?

Most of us, most of the time, long to get away from it all: away from the rush and the stress and the busy-ness of our everyday lives. Time away to spend time with the Lord. Time to get fitter and leaner in every way. AND in a beautiful and special place.

So here’s a great idea for you. Come on a pilgrimage! It’s a vacation with a difference, and  many people are now discovering that walking on ancient pathways, surrounded by beauty, in peaceful quiet places, helps you get into a rhythm that often makes it easier to hear from God, to shed the burdens, to rediscover who you are and who you are meant to be.

Kim and Penelope, both clergy who are experienced in leading pilgrimages, are planning to lead two special walks in 2018.  

-       Come to Cornwall in mid May 2018 and walk the ancient coastal pathway from the most westerly point to the most southerly point of England. A land of wild seas, Celtic saints, clotted cream and Cornish pasties! You might spot seals, eat a cream tea, enjoy local fresh fish, learn about Celtic saints, worship in a 6th century church. And along the way, have plenty of time to be refreshed and renewed in your walk with the Lord. In May, the coastal path is fringed with glorious wild flowers - bluebells, thrift, gorse, campion and many others. For more details click HERE.

-     Or come to Italy in early September 2018, to walk along some of the Via Francigena in Tuscany.  Part of the long Pilgrim route which stretches from Canterbury to Rome, it offers glorious scenery, fabulous wines (!) ancient frescoes, hill top mediaeval villages, and a true sense of doing something different.   The ancient route was supposedly first travelled by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Sigeric, in the year 990, as he travelled between Rome and Canterbury. The archbishop described the 79 stages of his itinerary in a journal.  You will follow in the footsteps of the pilgrims who over the centuries have travelled across Europe and down the Italian peninsula, and we will spend time enjoying the route and all it has to offer as we travel through a very special part of Tuscany.   For more details click HERE.

Both Pilgrimages offer special things; both will include days of glorious walking (some of which is demanding, but we help you prepare for that!); both will have daily times of worship, meditations and spiritual ‘exercises’ to help you to focus on what the Lord might want to say to you.

Take a look at the information,  pray and think about whether 2018 is the year when you do something very different, something that many people have found to be absolutely life changing. You won’t regret it! (except for the end of day one, but that’s another story….)

What previous pilgrims have said:

I have just started seminary…. I will ALWAYS think of that experience (ie the Pilgrimage)  as one of the tops, and it was the catalyst to begin this whole other chapter of my life — it sure was  amazing!    Meg

The Cotswold Way Pilgrimage was formative for me in so many ways, Penelope…thank you for providing this catalyst for transformation in my life.  Shelly

It was great to have devotions each night…they were really helpful talks.  Rick

It truly was a life changing experience for me; and I met with God in a way I’d never done before.  Roy

It was fantastic! I haven't had a group vacation in a long time and now that I know how much fun I had with others, hiking through the hills, I'd be willing to take more vacation time and do a longer or equally long trip/hike again. I am profoundly grateful for the opportunity to have joined you and the others on this trip! Thank you!  Ann

I loved the Scripture memory especially the day we passed the verse around verbally, phrase-by-phrase, through the  kissing gates and along the trail. :)       I loved learning the morning collect too!  AJ

 Your information ahead of time was extremely helpful as to what to bring, wear for hiking and in the evenings, and what the terrain was going to be like. Colin

This is what the Lord says: “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.” Jer. 6:16

leaning into the wind in Cornwall!

leaning into the wind in Cornwall!

So NOW is the time to begin planning to come! If you are at all interested, please contact us to register your interest. This does not commit you, merely registers that you might well like to come and would like to receive full details when they become available. Each Walk is limited to just 12 people, so register your interest soon!
Couples and singles are all welcomed; please note that accommodation is in shared rooms of 2.

Please email penelope@ministriesbydesign.org with the following details:

 - Your name, address and home church

- which pilgrimage you are interested in (Italy, Cornwall or the Cotswolds)

- whether you plan to come alone, with your spouse, or with a group

This is a wonderful opportunity to take some out in a beautiful place - for time with the Lord, for seeing new places, for learning a new rhythm of life, for making new friends, for being refreshed and renewed. Why not pray about whether this is right for you for now?

Come walk with us - we look forward to seeing you next year!

- The Revs Kim & Penelope Swithinbank

 

"The idea (of pilgrimage) being that sometimes, in order to see clearly, we need to separate ourselves from the daily grind, from our everyday work and responsibilities. On a long (and sometimes arduous) hike, things often fall into perspective. Answers to tricky questions can break through when your head is free of the internet and the news.  With the wind whistling through your hair and the sun on your face, life suddenly becomes far more simple. You have time to think, maybe even to pray – and sometimes answers break through like a shaft of sunlight glancing down into a clearing." Jane Alexander, writing in The Telegraph