Prayers for Pilgrims

Pilgrimage Shell by photographer Jill K H Geoffrion

When visiting a pilgrimage site, a prayer for grounding in order to expand
Begin by paying attention to your natural way of breathing. Be aware of the inhale and the exhale without trying to change them.
Notice when your thoughts and feelings begin to feel quieter and/or settled.
When you are ready, inhale breathing the entire pilgrimage site into a single point in your heart.
Then exhale, filling the entire site with the love of God flowing from your heart.
Continue to inhale and exhale in this way until you feel ready to stop, or for five minutes.
Then rest in the Divine Presence without expending any energy for two minutes.
Complete your time of prayer with an expression of gratitude.

Student pilgrimage to Chartres France by photographer Jill Geoffrion

Prayer of a Pilgrim for Today

Good morning God,
What will today bring?
What will You bring into my life?
Into my consciousness,
Into my body awareness

I give You what I have to give:
My love, first of all, my love!

I give my longings to You,
asking for your input on each.
What do you think of them?
Which do You imagine are most important to me to use my energy to realize?

What have I forgotten
to reach for
with my mind
and heart?

It takes me courage,
but upon finding it in my depths,
I wonder with You,
How can I become more open today?

Having asked the question,
I prepare to go to find out
what will happen
in this place
during this day.

First prayed by Jill K H Geoffrion while on pilgrimage

“May you be supported by the grace of God on your journey so that you may overcome and be strengthened by the travails of your pilgrimage, and safely reach your destination, to return to us, enriched, enlightened, and invigorated to take up your tasks again, renewed.”
(Pilgrim blessing for pilgrims on the way to Santiago de Compostela, shared by American Pilgrims on the Camino.)

Ecumenical pilgrimage from Chartres to Gaubert by photographer Jill K H Geoffrion

God, You called your servant Abraham from Ur in Chaldea, watching over him in all his wanderings, and guided the Hebrew people as they crossed the desert.  Guard these your children who, for the love of your Name, make a pilgrimage to Compostela.  Be their companion on the way, their guide at the crossroads, their strength in weariness, their defense in dangers, their shelter on the path, their shade in the heat, their light in the darkness, their comfort in discouragement, and the firmness of their intentions; that through your guidance, they may arrive safely at the end of their journey and, enriched with grace and virtue, may return to their homes filled with salutary and lasting joy. Pilgrim’s Prayer: Codex Calixtinus, 12th century illuminated manuscript

Embodied pilgrimage rituals

1. Prayer Movements: Prayer 1
2. Prayer Movements: Prayer 2
3.Un rituel français

Prière des Pèlerins 1
Ô Dieu qui avez fait partir Abraham de son pays
Et l’avez gardé sain et sauf à travers ses voyages,
Accordez à vos enfants la même protection.
Soutenez-nous dans les dangers
Et allégez nos marches.
Soyez-nous une ombre contre le soleil,
Un manteau contre la pluie et le froid.
Portez-nous dans nos fatigues
Et défendez-nous contre tout péril.
Soyez le bâton qui évite les chutes
Et le port qui accueille les naufragés.
Afin que, guidés par Vous,
Nous atteignons avec certitude notre but
Et revenions sains et saufs à la maison.
Jean Debruynne

Camino Pilgrimage Sign by Timothy Charles Geoffrion

Prière des Pèlerins 2
Je serai pèlerin Je marcherai. Je marcherai sous le soleil trop lourd, sous la pluie à verse et dans la tourmente. En marchant, le soleil réchauffera mon coeur de pierre, la pluie fera de mes déserts un jardin. À force d’user mes chaussures j’userai mes habitudes. Je marcherai, et ma marche sera démarche. J’irai moins au bout de la route qu’au bout de moi-même. Je serai pèlerin. Je ne partirai pas seulement en voyage, je deviendrai moi-même un voyage, un pèlerinage. Jean Debruynne