I have been on a journey through life, punctuated by intense sojourns to places of significant stories. These moments put faith and life into relief, helping me to grasp that which is often hidden deeply within. Over the past twenty years I have spent time exploring how faith weaves into life, through involvement in a small Lutheran church, participation with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, as well as through job stints as an economic analyst, strategic planner at a zoo’s education department, site director of an AmeriCorps program, and now a campus minister. Each of these opportunities helped me to see through different perspectives how the Word of God infiltrates the world today. During this same time I was also exploring another type of journey, that of literary pilgrimage – a journey to a place of literary significance. These interactions of place, literature, and pilgrim provided additional insight into literature, as well as provided a journey into faith – whether the site was Walden Pond; Assisi, Italy; or Haworth, England.
Now I’m taking these works beyond my comfortable confines and sharing them with others. Through posting words on this blog, engaging with students in campus ministry, and talking with people throughout the community, I want to learn more about this practice of sacred journey. What stories do we carry with us? How do specific places and journeys change our lives? How is it possible to redeem pilgrimage – walk those paths of stories that can help us see our stories more clearly within God’s larger narrative?
At least once a week I plan to share observations of journeys I’ve taken, thoughts of pilgrimage, adventures in daily life, reflections on readings, integrating pilgrimage into ministry, and much more. However, this isn’t only a place for me to wax eloquent, but a place to create a community of pilgrims sharing our journeys together and learning from one another. A place to share stories as a way to create and cultivate culture. I hope you are ready to take up your walking staff.