Thank you for the opportunity to participate in the Carmelite Way Pilgrimage. It engaged my whole being – body and soul and my relationship with those traveling the way. I can only guess at the amount of time and effort expended to make this a worthwhile experience for everyone. Over the three days, this became more evident to me. I thought the planning and organisation was superb…I found the group very supportive. Many thanks to all involved.
Thanks to all of you who I have met and talk to. It was a great time for me to be able to be among you. Thanks for the friendship we shared, the kindness, caring and generosity that I have experienced from you all. May God bless you all.Kind regards
Brother Agedo Bento
Thanks so much for a truly special spiritual experience, my first longer walk (and pilgrimage) since I was a teenager! What made an impact on me was being surrounded by and understanding Gods creation while enjoying the company of fellow pilgrims on our journey. While I was anticipating more solitude and less chatting while on our journey I found God created opportunities for me to hear the spirit through bush sounds and especially the gentle conversations with fellow pilgrims. I learnt more about myself and what guides the soul. Felt very humble at the end of the weekend sensed the presence of God a few times as well! In terms of follow up to the pilgrimage, I would like to include my animal and plant identification skills into the weekends appreciation of creation around us, look into including what pilgrims may hear (birds, bush signs, etc) or see (plants, clouds, habitats) while on their journey…I can help in this. Using the senses to ‘hear & see’ God around oneself…
A group of 27 people set out to walk the beautiful Lilydale to Warburton rail trail 10-12 November. Amongst the group there was a range of walking experience, some who had walked hundreds of kilometres and some who were unsure of their ability but willing to try none the less. Over three days we walked beside still waters, through groves of eucalypts, past lush farm paddocks and fragrant rose gardens, then cooled our feet in tumbling streams. We enjoyed the camaraderie of our companions in coffee shops in small towns along the way, we identified bird calls and local flora and at times walked in silence. We laughed and prayed and tended blisters. For two nights we slept at Pallotti College at Millgrove, perched on the side of a hill overlooking the glorious Yarra Valley and at the end of our walk we were welcomed by the community of Sancta Sofia at Warburton and shared the Eucharist.
This was “The Carmelite Way”, a truly Australian pilgrimage experience and if you think you would like to try it the dates for next year are 9th – 11th Nov. Thank you Irene and Damien for instigating this wonderful opportunity and for offering it to us over the last 8 years.
Loved, loved the weekend again….God’s garden is always a wonder and along with the pilgrims we are truly blessed! Fr. Paul made an impact on me. His Theme for the weekend was to “open your eyes””, he asked us to do this at the start and then used the same for his talk to us in the evening on Friday. I love the song and find I can use it as a prayer anytime.
Maybe it would be good to arrange a talk/get-together with Martin about the natural wonders…as he was a fountain of knowledge and really loved the environment.
Fr. Ken and Sr. Kath’s choice of “How Great Thou Art” at the end of Mass was so perfect and brought some of us to tears. Amazing ending to our weekend being at Santa Sophia. Thanks to all for all the effort put in.
It was a new addition that you handed out the map of the Rail Trail. I liked to read about things that maybe I had seen but not realized the reasons they were on the trail e.g. The Queen passed along the busy Monbulk Road in 1956, crowds gathered (at the crossing we still make into Mt. Evelyn) and they waved……It brought back the memory for me of seeing her on the same tour but I was in Salisbury/Harare, Rhodesia/Zimbabwe and clearly remember waving madly as the cars went past us! Small world.
Special thanks to you both, wonderful job well done and I’m looking forward to 2018 already.