Pilgrimage is the ancient spiritual practice of preparing and making an intentional journey with God, which may or may not include an element of travel.
In May, twenty pilgrims from St. Luke’s and beyond embarked on an inspiring pilgrimage walking nearly 150 miles along the ancient Camino (Way) to Santiago, Spain. The Rev. Sheryl Kujawa-Holbrook, theologian and spiritual writer, suggests that there are three stages to the work of pilgrimage: separation, transition, and incorporation. A key aspect of pilgrimage is striving for balance between solitude and community, with each person finding their own unique sense of this balance.
• Separation begins as a person considers motivations and planning for an upcoming pilgrimage. This is also the stage of preparing body, mind and spirit, seeking support from family, friends and community, and managing the stresses and anxieties that arise in anticipation of the journey ahead.
• Transition unfolds through the actual pilgrimage, the journey itself. Transition can happen in any pilgrimage of life, including compelling life realities such as facing a stressful diagnosis, beginning chemotherapy, or considering the prospect of divorce. This is a reflective time that might well include prayer, journaling, and conversation (or perhaps no conversation).
• Incorporation begins as a pilgrimage winds down and the end is in sight. There is a sense of reconnecting with those around us, often in a new way. This stage reveals an important spiritual task, that of integrating a new learning in our life. Pilgrims return, or come to a new place in life, changed.
Join us on Wednesday, July 26, at 6:30 p.m. following the Wednesday Candlelight Communion for a lively time with our Camino Pilgrims sharing stories, pictures, and food from our recent journey in Spain. (RSVP here so we can plan the food.)
How is God calling you into the sacred work of pilgrimage these days?
Peace to you,