A pilgrimage is a time to move out of our comfort zone and visit distant places or new cultures that help us see our life and work from new perspectives. Pilgrimage is a time of Sabbath, it is a time of renewal.

While the world is filled with limitless possibilities for pilgrimage, here are five pilgrimages that we encourage our Gulf Coast leaders to consider. These pilgrimages take more time and finances than a typical continuing education event, or a vacation, but they are worth saving up some of your continuing education funds over a period of years to participate. In some cases scholarships are available. Consider one of these for a sabbatical.

Holy Land

We spend our lives hearing stories of the Israelites, and stories about Jesus in Galilee and Judea. Pastors and deacons preach about these stories throughout their careers. Visiting helps us to see and hear these stories in new ways. Pastor Beth Warpmaeker did her internship at Lutheran church of the Redeemer in the old city of Jerusalem. She leads trips that will be more than a travelog, but an engagement with the church in Palestine. beth@warpmaeker.org

In Search of Paul

Paul write to churches in what is now Turkey and Greece. To understand the context more fully, join in on this annual spring pilgrimage led by Pastor Don Carlson: donmcarlson@gmail.com. https://waytolead.org/in-search-of-paul-2020/

Reformation

The 16th century reformation was sparked when Martin Luther posted the 95 Theses on the door of the church in Wittenberg. Every few years we have a pilgrimage to Wittenberg, Eisleben, Erfurt, Eisenach, Leipzig, the Wartburg castle and more. https://bishopmike.com/reformation-tour-2020/ Contact Bishop Mike for more information. bishop@gulfcoastsynod.org

Peru

One of our companion synods is the Lutheran Church in Peru. Join us for an annual pilgrimage to Lima and Cuzco to visit church’s and learn the culture. Contact Bishop Mike. bishop@gulfcoastsynod.org

Rome

Pastor Jim Giannantonio of Christ the Servant in Houston has been leading a January pilgrimage to Rome for decades. This trip spends much time walking beneath the city to understand the early church. Contact Pastor Jim at prjim@christtheservant.net.