I’d like to say that I had some deeply profound reasons for joining the Epiphany Pilgrimage but mostly they were fairly prosaic.
I’d signed up to hike to Everest Base Camp later in the year and knew that I needed the experience of hiking for more than a few hours at a time which had been all that I’d done to date.
Also my son was overseas on his first “big trip” and I thought I’d need something to fill in the time until he came back home, believing that I might be feeling a bit lonely being on my own for a month.
However there was also something curiously appealing about the idea of attending daily Mass and evening prayer in conjunction with being outdoors and challenging myself with a hike through the mountains.
The deal was sealed completely when I suggested it to Margaret, my best friend since high school and she said “sure, why not!”
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During the seven days of the Pilgrimage, I found myself reflecting on my childhood where daily Mass and saying the evening Rosary were common place.
I was intrigued to hear the stories from the other pilgrims and to try and work out what it is that keeps people connected to their faith – especially younger ones when there is so much competition for their time and attention. I found it inspiring to learn of other people’s struggles and I believe that all of us were united in a common search for a deeper connection with our faith.
While I enjoyed every minute of the Epiphany Pilgrimage I didn’t think at the time it was really having a profound impact on me in the way that I thought it might.
However the final Mass in the beautiful bushland setting at Bell and the time that I’ve spent reflecting on the whole experience since returning home has made me realise that it is something that will continue to challenge and inspire my spiritual being for many years to come.
By Anne Tunks, 2018 pilgrim.
Registrations are now open for the 2019 Epiphany Pilgrimage (2 – 8 January 2019). We would love to welcome you on the journey with us.
Registrations close on Sunday, 9 December 2018 or when the pilgrimage reaches capacity.