Thursday, October 27, 2011

airports and contemporary pilgrimage

At 7 am yesterday I needed to navigate from the Domestic terminal, to the International terminal at Auckland Airport. There are two options.

A bus.

Or a walk, of about 15 minutes.

Being a fine morning, and having been up since 4 am, I needed a stretch. On the spur of the moment, I decided not only to walk, but to walk holding a small carved wooden pilgrims cross I had brought near Durham Cathedral in September.

It transformed the walk. What was a stroll became a spiritual exercise.

As I walked, I found myself reminded of other times I had walked holding the cross, especially at Holy Island. (See my photo essay here). During that walk, I was overwhelmed with the realisation of how many others in history have walked the walk and what it means to consider the life journey as one surrounded by pilgrims.

This turned my walk between airport terminals into prayer – for those walking with me, for those I passed, for those who have walked before and will walk into the future.

A walk + small hand held wooden cross + memory = a moment of spiritual engagement.

Posted by steve at 08:04 AM

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