Young people to take part in Pilgrimage of Hope

Pilgrims on Iona

Dozens of young Christians will embark on a life changing journey this summer to learn about their spiritual heritage and how their faith can inspire them to make a difference in the world today.

The two-week long Pilgrimage of Hope starts in London on 15 July, where pilgrims will learn about some of the heroes of the faith.

Two days of training will be followed by three days of hands on mission and youth work in various parts of the UK.

Five days of pilgrimage will then take them to Iona and Lindisfarne, where they will learn more about the sacrifices made by the early Christians to spread the message of Christianity around the UK and Europe.

Pilgrims will explore the impact of the likes of Lord Shaftesbury, William Wilberforce, and John Wesley, and the pioneering Christians of the British Isles, Aidan, Patrick and Columba.

For many of the 80 pilgrims who took part last year it was a life changing journey.

Claire, a British university student, described what it meant to her: "It was an invaluable time in which we had space to reflect ... it was a time in which I was listened to and enjoyed listening and sharing... Through this journey I feel that God is inviting me to be ready to live for him everyday, and see Jesus in every person, treat them as if they were him. He wants me to continue to listen and be prepared and courageous at uni."

Learning about the Reformers in London

Each pilgrim will be given a church-hosted mission placement where they will help run community events.

One inner city church leader, Juan Carlos, reflected on his experience hosting some of last year's pilgrims: "I learned that it is possible to approach my community. People are open and there are so many opportunities, now the job is to do the follow up reconnecting with all those who we connected with during the mission."

One of last year's pilgrims, Annelise from the USA, explained the way her thinking had changed through the pilgrimage: "I am challenged to live as Christ, to see him in others, always putting God and others first. I've learned it's a lifestyle not a belief."

The pilgrimage is being organised by Fusion Youth and Community UK.

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