Pilgrim Stories

The following are some comments from people – fellow pilgrims – who have accompanied Brett on pilgrimages.



"Pilgrimage is a disciplined and attentive journey. There is a path beyond the road you take. You must travel in a certain manner in order to survive. That “way” of moving teaches you how you progress through life. In the end it peels back the layers of experience until you reach the source. There you find your strength, your wisdom, and your purpose."
Larry - Asheville, NC


"The practice of pilgrimage has made me more conscious of the spirituality of hospitality, which is not uniquely Christian but is essential to Christian living: openness to the stranger and openness to being a stranger, that is openness to seeking Christ and openness to being Christ for another person.  When I feel that I am living less hospitably I know that it is time to go on another pilgrimage. Even if it is not one as sexy as the Camino in Spain, practicing pilgrimage helps reconnect me to the gratitude and openness of sharing life with others that is so vital to a healthy spirituality."
Michael - Half Moon Bay, CA


"There were events and encounters that I was able to name as a gift in the moment, but mostly I’ve had to offer thanks by way of prayers and holding on to those memories and sharing the story, because those simple acts of hospitality still mean more to me than the tangible souvenirs of that journey.  The Spanish man who invited me in, fed me, and shared stories with me – he did something that was simultaneously so earthy and sacred, he fed my belly and my soul."
Michael - Half Moon Bay, CA


"...but pilgrimage is not unique to a location for me. Maybe for some with classical ideas about getting somewhere to see a particular relic or structure, but for us that is not our vision for pilgrimage. Thinking of the walks Jesus did with his own disciples it was never really about where they were going in order to accomplish substance and meaning. It was about valuing, "where your feet are planted." And the quicker we carry that spirit outside intentional pilgrimage the quicker we will all be to honoring a Godly pace in our lives.
John - Chapel Hill, NC


"Our group of 14 students and 3 leaders walked across England on Hadrian's Wall followed by a couple days on the Isle of Mull and Iona concluding with a week in Fife north of Edinburgh. Even with a drenched first day on the trail with borrowed boots due to lost luggage could not dampen our spirits. I actually think it was instrumental to the cohesion of our group starting with a good dose of adversity and trusting in one another to make it to our destination that night. It was inspiring to walk with these students and sing songs, pray, walk in silence, and look out on some of the most beautiful landscape the UK has to offer.
John - Chapel Hill, NC

"Pilgrimage is a kind of prayer—not addressing God but intensely listening.  It begins simply. You acknowledge, “I’m here and I’m paying attention,” and you do that with your body and your mind and your soul for hours and miles. You attend to the world in a way you have never done before. The contact is essential to the experience—pressure, abrasion, temperature, elevation, sunlight, moisture, sound, conversation, , smell, rhythm, taste. You cannot control the conditions nor your responses. Eventually, everything that you question and wonder and fear is released, but only as you walk through it. It becomes an intense review of your life’s lessons."
Larry - Asheville, NC