Pilgrimage is a universal theme. Its roots are centuries old. Since the first people to hear the Gospel story journeyed to Jerusalem to walk in the steps of Jesus, Christians have found spiritual insight and healing in travelling to the places that are special to our faith.

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The Centre for Christian Pilgrimage has been established to support the development of pilgrimage as a tool for discipleship. We aim to share resources and offer practical training and theological reflection in order to deepen our understanding of the value of pilgrimage in the 21st century.

It emerged from a partnership between Christ Church Cathedral in Oxford; the Revd Dr Sally Welch, diocesan spirituality adviser for the Diocese of Oxford; and members of the Christian Pilgrimage Network, a group of people with an interest in pilgrimage spirituality.

Christ Church Cathedral has long been a site of devotion by pilgrims. Christians have felt drawn to pray at the Shrine of St Frideswide for many centuries. The Priory on which the Cathedral was built was an important destination for medieval pilgrims.

Today, people remain drawn to the Latin Chapel and the Shrine it houses because they sense this is a place where the veil between our earthly life and the Kingdom of Heaven is very thin. It is place that has been soaked in prayer over the centuries.

The Christian Pilgrimage Network is a network of church leaders and others working on the development of local and regional Christian pilgrimage. Its aim is to advance Christian pilgrimage as a vehicle for community building and mission, through sharing expertise across diocesan boundaries.  It communicates experiences and shares resources across diocesan boundaries, establishing a learning hub for best practice, and offering training days in both practical pilgrimage and route-devising.

The next meeting is planned for spring 2021. To be added to our mailing list please contact sally.welch@christianpilgrimagenetwork.org.uk