Pilgrimage Project

Pilgrimage involves going on a journey, which can often lead to us connecting to the world in new ways. Be it appreciating God’s creation in deeper ways or connecting with a deeper call to live the spiritual life.

The Diocese of Oxford has launched the Pilgrim Project  to encourage the spirit of pilgrimage,  part of which has led to the launch of a new diocesan pilgrimage map which features 15 places of special spiritual significance across the Diocese of Oxford. The hope is that the map will inspire not just visitors to each place on the map, but also a spirit of pilgrimage elsewhere. For example, one rural benefice has already been inspired by this project to plan a local pilgrim map encompassing each of its seven churches. What could you do in your area? How can the spirit of pilgrimage encourage us in caring for creation?

Resources to help are on hand, including:

There are A3 posters of the Diocese of Oxford pilgrimage map available and also pocket sized folded maps. Contact the Diocese of Oxford Communications office (01865 208225) if you would like copies.

The Bishop of Oxford, The Rt Revd John Pritchard, will be visiting each place on the map to pray with local people over the summer. There is an open invitation to join him if you are in the area.

  • Monday 8 August: 9.30am Olney; 11.15am North Marston; 12.30pm Drayton Beauchamp
  • Tuesday 9 August: 9am Cookham; 10.30am Easthampstead; 12 noon Stoke Poges
  • Wednesday 10 August: 10.30am Speen; 12 noon Goring
  • Thursday 11 August: 10.30am Stanton Harcourt; 12.15 Dorchester Abbey
  • Friday 12 August: 9am Christ Church Cathedral.
  • Tuesday 30 August 10 am South Newington
  • Wednesday 31 August: 9.30 University Church; 10.45 Binsey; 2pm Compton Beauchamp

See below to view the Diocese of Oxford pilgrimage guides for each of the participating churches on their map.

HOME – a film by Yann Arthus-Bertrand

Yann Arthus-Bertrand photography is breathtaking and inspirational – his Earth from the Air exhibition has been round the world and always has at its core a goal of inspiring people to act on what they see. HOME is a film that brings his distinctive style of photography to the big screen. Exploring the miracle and mystery of the earth the film looks at the beauty of the earth and all its creatures… and follows the story of humans short presence on the earth, both our creative use and mindless destruction. Just like the photograph exhibition the film weaves history and facts through story with a back drop of amazing photography. The film producers say:

We are living in exceptional times. Scientists tell us that we have 10 years to change the way we live, avert the depletion of natural resources and the catastrophic evolution of the Earth’s climate.

The stakes are high for us and our children. Everyone should take part in the effort, and HOME has been conceived to take a message of mobilization out to every human being.

The film is 1 hour and 33 minutes long and available in full on YouTube for free. It is royalty-free and can be shown in public with no need for a license. It makes for a great  resource for groups to use and would work well being shown on a big screen in a community centre or church building as part of local projects and initiatives around environmental issues.

For more information visit: HOME Film website and the HOME YouTube Channel

Of Trees and Men

Looking for something shorter but along the same lines? Yann Arthus-Bertrand’s latest short film ‘Of Trees and Men’ was the official film for the launch of the International Year of Forests, 2011. You can view it and download it at www.offorestsandmen.org

Glow Worm Spectacular – 12th & 22nd July 2011

On Tuesday 12th July & Friday 22nd July the A Rocha Chiltern Gateway Project will be teaming up with Natural England to have a Glow Worm Spectacular at the Aston Rowant National Nature Reserve from 9.30pm – 11.00pm . There will be the opporutnity to meet local glow worm expert Robin Scagell and join in a magical after-dark glow worm spotting expedition!

Chiltern Gateway Project holds regular events and all are welcome – bring a friend – or two! Booking for these two events is essential – just call the Aston Rowant Reserve office on 01844 351833. The event costs £3 Adults, £1 Children. Meet at the Aston Rowant NNR car park signposted from the A40 near Stokenchurch, M40 J5. Nearest post code HP14 3

For further information Contact the Chiltern Gateway Project team – call Jo Whitfield on 01844 355263 or email jo@simonwhitfield.plus.com

Photo credit: timo_w2s