Cornish Pilgrimage – May 2020

Join me on a four day pilgrimage in the footsteps of the Celtic Saints of Cornwall, and discover the spiritual practice of putting one foot in front of the other.

Pilgrimage is an ancient practice of travelling (usually by foot) to a place of special significance, often a church, a city or a holy site. I also love the Celtic concept of pelegrinatio – the idea of setting out with no destination in mind, allowing God to guide you to the place of your resurrection.

This time, though, we do have a destination: four days walk from Newquay, ending at the beautiful and mystical St Michael’s Mount.

Will you join me?

St Michael’s Mount, Cornwall, our pilgrimage destination. Photo by Benjamin Elliott.

What to expect

The experience of going on pilgrimage is different for every person, and will probably be different on each pilgrimage you do! It is a time to seek the Spirit’s guiding, and to listen to your own deepest desires.

It may take some hours or even a day or two to settle into the rhythm of walking, and allow those things that are deeply buried to rise, prompted by nature, by the experience of walking, by the holy places we visit.

You may experience some epiphanies or breakthroughs, but also you might find much of the walk to be a simple experience of obedience and settling into the quiet, and that is equally valid.

I will be there to help hold whatever you experience, and to provide times during the day for reflection and discussion. We will set aside part of every day to walk in silence, and part where it is ok to talk with one another as we walk.

“Many believe a pilgrimage is about going away but it isn’t; it is about coming home. Those who choose to go on pilgrimage have already ventured away from themselves; and now set out in a longing to journey back to who they are.”

– L.M. Browning
The coastal path at St Agnes, part of the route we will walk together. Photo by Danilo D’Agostino.

The details

Dates: 18-23 May 2020

Day 1 – travel day, arriving in Newquay in time for dinner together.
Day 2 – walk to Perranporth (18km)
Day 3- walk to Portreath (19km)
Day 4 – walk to Lelant (23km)
Day 5 – walking St Michael’s Way to Marazion and (tides permitting!) across the Causeway to St Michael’s Mount (19km). 
Day 6 – travel day back home, from Penzance.

We will stay at hostels for the first three nights of our stay, and in a pub and a local hotel the last two nights.

The total cost for accommodation will be about £170 for five nights accommodation (averaging £34/night). You will need to be willing to share a double room or a dorm room with your travelling companions.

We will eat simply. Breakfast is usually included with our accommodation. We will carry a packed lunch with us, and work together each morning to prepare that before we go (please let me know if you have any dietary requirements).

Our evening meal will be taken in our accommodation. The cost of evening meals will be your responsibility; the cost of packed lunches will be shared between us. Please bring any snacks you might need during the day.

You are responsible for booking your own travel to Newquay on 18th May, and returning from Penzance on 23rd May. I will let you know how I plan to travel once you are booked on the pilgrimage.

If you want to come by car, you will need to leave it in Newquay while we walk, and take a bus or taxi back on the final day. If you do decide to drive, please let me know and others may be able to travel with you and share the petrol costs.

This is a long walk! We have relatively challenging distances to cover each day, with hills to navigate along the way.

You need to have decent walking boots or shoes that you have already worn in, and I highly recommend scheduling some practice walks in the weeks before the pilgrimage, to prepare your body.

Once you sign up, I will send you a recommended packing list.

You will also be sent some prayer and reading prompts to help you prepare spiritually for the pilgrimage and set your intention.

Important Disclaimer:
I have no qualifications or formal instruction in leading walking groups. I will be well prepared, and have experience of walking following maps, but by signing up to come on this pilgrimage, you agree that you are fully responsible for your own safety.

Photo by Mike Erskine.

Are you in?

“To feel the pull, the draw, the interior attraction, and to want to follow it, even if it has no name still, that is the pilgrim spirit. The why only becomes clear as time passes, only long after the walking is over.”

― Kevin A. Codd

If you are feeling the inner tug of the Spirit to join me on this Pilgrimage, please let me know as soon as possible by emailing or calling 07496932816.