River of Life pilgrimage down the Connecticut River
Sponsored by the Episcopal Dioceses of:
New Hampshire, Vermont, Western Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Maine.
In partnership with Province I of the Episcopal Church, the New England Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and Kairos Earth.
A core group of “river pilgrims” journeyed the full length of the river, joined by “daily pilgrims” as they traversed individual stretches/communities, and by “pilgrims in prayer” for those who weren’t able to paddle along or join in events but wished to participate in the 40-day spiritual practice of the Pilgrimage.
Our own Youth Minister, Jodi Kelly, joined the River Pilgrimage group for the shoreline segment of the CT River paddle.
These Bishops paddled in the CT River Pilgrimage
Grace Church was honored to welcome the paddling pilgrims at the final juncture of their trip, here in Old Saybrook, where the Connecticut River meets with Long Island Sound: the terminus of the Pilgrimage.
Tired paddlers who'd been delayed in their arrival to our tribute barbecue by the changing tides & conditions, threw down their life-jackets & equipment to wearily engage in conversation & repast with us. It was delightful to hear the many stories of the adventure, along with its physical & spriritual challenges & rewards.
Our Hospitality Committee & volunteers provided food & drink for our guests, along with some good fellowship.
Pilgrims came off the river to be greeted by members of Grace Church, some of whom had just attended the Coast Guard Jazz Concert next door at the Old Saybrook Historical Society.
The River Pilgrimage participants gathered w/Grace Church parishioners at outdoor picnic tables, crafted by our Youth Ministry last year, to eat a wide variety of grilled & chilled foods. The trip conversation was very interesting.
Karin Hamilton used her skills to photo-shoot the event
Bishop Ian's exuberance was palpable after paddling w/the pilgrims
We want to thank the pilgrims who attended the final reception at Grace Church and extend our congratulations to all those of you who participated, & completed personal, spiritual & physical challenges on your journey.
"And he showed me a river of water of life, bright as crystal,
proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb"
- Revelation 22:1 (ASV)