Iona Pilgrimage

June 2 – 12, 2022

 

Apply now!

Overview

AN ANCHOR FOR THE SOUL

Iona, a sacred island off the West coast of Scotland, is only three miles long and a mile and a half wide. According to geologists, the rocks on Iona are among the oldest on Earth, some 2.7 billion years old. On these ancient rocks, Columba and a small cohort of fellow monks arrived on Pentecost Day in 563. They discovered a wild and beautiful place battered by strong tides and fierce winds, yet also a safe haven where they could anchor their souls and live into the promise of new beginnings.

Today, Iona continues to be an anchor for one’s soul. Its simplicity and beauty nourish the pilgrim heart. Vibrant worship services in the iconic Abbey deepen confidence in God’s presence and goodness in all of life. The ancient rocks steady hopes and inspire visions of new possibilities. Columba and other Celtic saints offer their wisdom and guidance as we follow their footsteps and seek a world woven together in love.

On this pilgrimage, we will share times of prayer and reflection every day, while also experiencing plenary and small group times for deeper listening and opening to God’s spirit. There will be opportunities to participate in the worship life of the Abbey, as well as guided pilgrimage walks in the Abbey and across the island to Columba’s Bay. There will be ample free time for exploring on your own, and a quiet day for deepening our trust in the mystery of divine Presence. In our own Contemplative Communion Service, we will celebrate our renewed heart-confidence that God is birthing a new life and vision in us, and through us, a blessing for the world.

Daily Schedule and Intentions

Our Shared Intentions for this pilgrimage are to:

    • Deepen our awareness of the Holy One’s radiant presence in all of life.
    • Draw on Celtic wisdom and vision for new life and fresh possibilities.
    • Experience the spiritual treasures of Iona and the Iona community.
    • Honor the giftedness of our own pilgrim spiritual community.

Schedule: This schedule may vary slightly based on the movement of the Spirit and the needs of the community.

Day 1:

We begin our pilgrimage in Glasgow where we gather in the afternoon for welcome, introductions, setting our intentions and pilgrim prayers. O/N Glasgow (Thursday, June 2, 2022)

Day 2:

We continue building our spiritual community, with a focus on contemplative pilgrimage, Celtic wisdom and small group sharing. We end this day with a Pilgrim Service of Blessing for the journey. O/N Glasgow (Friday, June 3)

Day 3:

We travel by bus through the beautiful Scottish countryside and arrive at Oban for a 45- minute ferry ride to the Isle of Mull. Our bus then takes us across Mull, and after another, shorter trip by ferry, we arrive on the Isle of Iona. We’ll check into the St. Columba Hotel in time for dinner and end our day with prayers in the historic Abbey. O/N Iona (Saturday, June 4)

Day 4:

We join the Abbey community for Sunday morning worship and an optional session afterwards in the Chapter House on “What is the Iona Community?” After prayers in the Abbey tonight, we enter into the silence of the island for deepening quiet. O/N Iona (Sunday, June 5)

Day 5:

We continue our reflections on contemplative pilgrimage and Celtic wisdom as we embrace the rhythms of the island. Guided reflections invite our awakening to the sacred in all of life. O/N Iona (Monday, June 6)

Day 6:

Our journey today includes a pilgrimage walk to Columba’s Bay where Columba and his fellow monks landed in 563. We’ll enjoy a picnic lunch along the way. O/N Iona (Tuesday, June 7)

Day 7:

Today we deepen our experience in the Abbey through a guided prayer walk as we lift up story, image, prayer and song in this sacred space. O/N Iona (Wednesday, June 8)

Day 8:

This is a quiet day for solitude in community and for deepening our connection with the God of all creation. We bring this day to a close with a Contemplative Communion Service. O/N Iona (Thursday, June 9)

Day 9:

This day is free for us to explore the island on our own, return to favorite places or discover new ones. Tours to the Island of Staffa and Fingal’s Cave are also available for extra cost. O/N Iona (Friday, June 10)

Day 10:

This morning we seek to harvest some of the spiritual treasures of this pilgrimage and then retrace our steps back to Glasgow. We will celebrate our pilgrimage journey and prepare for returning home. O/N Glasgow (Saturday, June 11)

Day 11:

After breakfast, we say goodbye and begin the next chapter of our journey with a fresh sense of the new life and vision that God is seeking to birth in us and through us for the world. (Sunday, June 12)

View photos from past Iona Pilgrimages here.

Leaders

Carole Crumley has led many pilgrim groups to Iona as well as to other sacred sites throughout Europe, the Middle East, and the U.S. She is an Episcopal priest, who served in three congregations and as canon educator and founder of the Center for Prayer and Pilgrimage at Washington National Cathedral. Formerly Shalem’s Senior Program Director, she is on the staff of Shalem’s Going Deeper: Clergy Spiritual Life and Leadership and Transforming Community: Leading Contemplative Prayer Groups & Retreats.

Leah Rampy is a retreat and pilgrimage leader and on the staff of Shalem’s Transforming Community: Leading Contemplative Prayer Groups & Retreats Programs. Formerly Shalem’s executive director, Leah is a student of Creation Spirituality and Celtic Spirituality and is passionate about contemplative ecology. She is the convener and guide for Church of the Wild ~ Two Rivers in Shepherdstown, WV.

Bill Stone has been part of Shalem’s pilgrimage teams to Iona, Edinburgh and Paris. A Presbyterian minister, he currently serves a congregation in New Jersey and previously spent seven years serving a congregation in Scotland. His time in Scotland nurtured a deep appreciation for Celtic spirituality and a love of hiking.

Price & Apply Now!

June 2 – 12, 2022

Application deadline: December 1, 2021

Price:
$4200 per person, double occupancy
Single room supplement: $550 additional and subject to availability

Payment Schedule:
$500 per person (non-refundable deposit) due now to reserve your space
(Reserving your space is contingent upon receipt of your deposit.)
$1850 per person (first installment) due 2/1/2022
$1850 per person (second installment) due 3/1/2022
Single room supplement due 3/1/2022

Included in the Pilgrimage Fee:
Three nights in Glasgow (Hotel TBA)
Seven nights at St. Columba Hotel on Iona
Breakfast daily, eight dinners, one picnic lunch
All entrance fees for sites included on the itinerary
Gratuities for drivers, housekeeping, dining and other staff
Travel by bus and ferry from Glasgow to Iona and return

Not Included in the Pilgrimage Fee:
Airfare to and from Scotland; airport transfers to/from Glasgow hotel
All lunches (except picnic) and two dinners
Beverages at scheduled meals except breakfasts
Excursions not on the itinerary

(*) A Caveat on Cost: Please be aware that should currency exchange rates and/or accommodation rates increase significantly over the next few months, we may have to request an additional surcharge. We appreciate your understanding.

We are requiring all pilgrims to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. If it is determined in the future that booster shots are needed for the safety of pilgrims, we might require booster shots. Our pilgrimages will follow all future travel guidelines set by the country in which the pilgrimage will take place. After filling out an application form, please email a scanned copy of your vaccination card to Trish (trish@shalem.org).

Frequently Asked Questions

To download a PDF of Frequently Asked Questions, click here. 

Cancellation Policy

Cancellations received on or before February 28, 2022 – 100% of monies received minus $500 non-refundable deposit; cancellations received between March 1 and April 3, 2022 – 50% of monies received minus $500 non-refundable deposit; no refunds will be made for cancellations received after April 3, 2022. Shalem reserves the right to cancel the pilgrimage for any reason, in which case you will receive a full refund of all monies paid.

Testimonials

“I appreciated the slow, prayerful time together as community and in nature. The plenary sessions and lectures were incredible and life changing. This pilgrimage has brought me deep healing.”

“To experience the [journey] in a prayerful pilgrim community has been an extraordinary gift for me. I appreciate the careful and inspired planning that went into making each step a mindful, spirit-filled opportunity to open our hearts to creation.”

“I certainly am returning home with a heightened sense of God’s love and our potential to know that love and a renewed desire to help make that love manifest in the world.”