Sample Celtic Christianity Pilgrimage
In recent years, there has been a major rediscovery of Celtic Christianity, although the enthusiasm that has surrounded this has not always been matched with genuine insights into the traditions and spirituality of the Celtic church. Lightline has twenty years of experience in bringing Christians from the USA to discover the story of the Celtic saints of northern Britain, and to visit the places associated with this remarkable flowering of mission and ministry in the 6th and 7th centuries of the Common Era.
Many of our pilgrimages combine the history and geography of the Celtic mission to Britain, starting with a few days on the island of Iona, where St Columba in 563. From this extraordinary base, the Celtic saints gradually re-evangelized northern Britain, journeying across modern-day Scotland to Holy Island (Lindisfarne) in Northumbria, and across much of the North East of England. Our pilgrimages offer visits all the major places touched by the ministry of these saints, usually culminating in some days based in Durham City, where the Norman cathedral was built as the final resting place of St Cuthbert, the most beloved of these saints. Throughout the pilgrimage, as we learn of the lives of Columba, Cuthbert, Aidan, Hild, Bede, Wilfrid and others, we learn much from them that will sustain Christian discipleship in the 21st Century.
- Hotel Stay
- Tour Guide
- Single Room Supplement
- Travel Insurance
- Laundry and items of a personal nature
We fly from the USA to Scotland, journeying through Newark International Airport. Our intercontinental flight departs at 7:45 pm, and dinner will be served on board together.
We land in Glasgow at 7:30 am, and after clearing immigration and Customs formalities, we begin the journey to Iona. Our bus will take us to the attractive town of Oban, where we board our first ferry across to the island of Mull. After crossing the island, we come to Fionnphort, where we board the passenger ferry over to Iona. All being well, we should arrive mid afternoon, and have time to freshen up before our first dinner.
For the next three days we have a chance to pray, explore, rest and relax on this uniquely beautiful island. During our stay, there will be the chance to visit Iona Abbey, and to participate in a walking pilgrimage of the island led by one of its residents. Alongside this there will be time for silence and worship, organized by Fr. Nathan and Fr. Jadon.
We bid farewell to Iona after breakfast and begin our journey back to the mainland. When we land back in Oban, we will enjoy a tour of its famous distillery, before heading onwards to Edinburgh, where we will arrive in time for dinner at our hotel, situated in the heart of Scotland’s beautiful capital city.
After breakfast we will walk to St Mary’s Cathedral (about a 15 minute walk) through the elegant streets of the city, and join the local community for the principal Cathedral Eucharist. The rest of the day will be free to explore the city on your own or with friends.
Today we will explore Glasgow, to learn about the great Celtic saint Kentigern, also known as St Mungo. We will start by visiting the Church of Scotland cathedral dedicated in his honor, and where his tomb is situated. After a guided tour of this very significant building and some free time in the adjoining Musuem of Religious Life and Art, we will have a break for lunch (not included in the tour price) at the Kelvingrove Gallery (where we will have the chance to see Salvador Dali’s famous painting Christ of St John of the Cross), we finish our day by visiting the early medieval stones at Govan, created to celebrate the richness of the lost kingdom of Strathclyde.
Our last full day will be devoted to some of the highlights of Edinburgh. Starting at Holyrood Palace we will also visit the Royal Mile and St Giles Cathedral. There will also be some final free time for last minute shopping before our final dinner together.
After breakfast, we will make the short journey to Edinburgh Airport for our lunchtime flight back to Washington Dulles Airport, where we will land back mid afternoon, and those flying onwards to Portland will connect onwards, to arrive home later this evening.