Church Walking Pilgrimages

Walking for spiritual revival, resting overnight in Churches

“This is an initiative that encourages discovery, engagement and reconnection with the natural world … Pilgrimage and the spirit of welcome deserve to be revived and have a relevance to all regardless of whether they have a religious faith or not.” (Mark T Jones)

Pilgrimage is a walk, of days, weeks, or months, time enough to get into a different state of mind and body, step by step, day by day. Pilgrimage is about the walk not the destination. Do it and see what happens.

Go simply (without car or back up support), buy food as you pass, carry your bed roll, sleeping bag, maps and, maybe, a book.

Some churches are providing sanctuaries, a place for pilgrims to lay out their bed roll for one night, a toilet and water point. We would welcome more, please join the movement.

  • NEW!: Via Beata Way, Lowestoft to St Davids, 340 miles, 2023 celebration of 900 years of pilgrimage to St Davids. June 2022 church sanctuaries are largely in place from Lowestoft to Worcester, please go to the map on this site for details

  • Blog; One pilgrim walking the Via Beata from June 27 2022, tweeting the route @CPilgrimages follow the journey

  • Blog on making a compost toilet (March 2022)

  • Herefordshire Diocese launched the Golden Valley Pilgrim Way at the Hereford Walking Festival June 21 2021, a five to six day walk, with churches as resting and focus points. The Golden Valley Pilgrim Way is ready to receive pilgrims NOW with six churches accommodating over night stays and more planned. Please navigate to Routes pages for more details.

  • Interview with church warden on How to Provide Overnight Sanctuary in Your Church.

This is a lovely initiative ... sanctuaries bring back the meaning of a church and network of churches as nodes of hospitality that can punctuate our pilgrim lives. (Alistair McIntosh)

… Earth's crammed with heaven,

And every common bush afire with God;

But only he who sees takes off his shoes,

The rest sit round it, and pluck blackberries!

Elizabeth Barrett Browning