Updated: Apr 17
Listen. Walk. Pray. Breathe. Celebrate.
The purpose of The Way of Stella Maris is to be a walking pilgrimage centred on prayer for the renewed life of each other and our local church.
Dear Pilgrims of The Way of Stella Maris,
As I sat in prayer a few moments ago, specifically praying for this pilgrimage, I thought of the words Paul wrote to the Philippians: Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. 6Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Phil 4:4-7)
May we rejoice, indeed! He is risen! Alleluia! Alleulia! May we also be gentle with others in the midst of such a global concern, which is heightening disorientation and stress among many. Earlier today I spoke with a 93 year-old man who recently moved into a local nursing home. This move is made all the more tough because his large family can’t visit him anymore. I know it’s a difficult transition for him, as it is for many in these challenging days of Covid-19, but I couldn’t help notice the “but” in the passage above. It comes after Paul exhorts us “not to worry about anything…” BUT, for surely we will worry about things, about lonely people and grieving people and hungry people and sick people and our elderly parents and our own health. Paul knows we will worry about all these things, so he provides a way to process it all. What does that look like? It starts with prayer and surrender with thanksgiving.
What are you thankful for? Pray about it. Write it down. Make these prayers of thanksgiving known to God. Talk to God, state what you are thankful for and be attentive to the inner movements of your soul, where deep cries out to deep. Here you will get glimpses of a peace that surpass all understanding. This peace cannot be grasped at, it cannot be controlled or even held too tightly, but it can be gently received as a healing balm for your soul. Allow yourself to bask in this peace and learn to recognize it and to more fully participate in it one day at a time. Jesus didn’t promise us life would be easy; he did promise us peace, a peace that surpasses all understanding. Gratitude is the attitude and prayer is the pathway to peace, where we confront the Prince of Peace, our Merciful Lord.
Speaking of pathways and prayer and gratitude and not worrying about anything, the pilgrimage planning committee met this evening and we are going to continue to plan as if everything is a go. All the venues and caterers have been booked, volunteers are coming together and our team is confident that from a planning perspective, we are good to go. Our go/no-go date will be August 1st. If on August 1st the pilgrimage is cancelled, everyone will receive a full refund. I know this date may be problematic for the three of you who are coming from outside the province, so if you want a refund please let me know.
We currently have 51 registered pilgrims. That means we only have room for 14 more. So, if you know someone who is considering it, I strongly recommend they register now by visiting: www.halifaxyarmouth.org/pilgrimage
If you are interested in volunteering, please send me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org We still have volunteer opportunities with transportation, water / rest stations and trail logistics.
I am in the process of building a website where I can post all the relevant information for this year and the years ahead. Here’s the address: www.thewayofstellamaris.com
Here’s an overview of the pilgrimage route:
August 9th We will meet at Holy Cross Church, Middle Musquodoboit at 4:00pm for registration, dinner, meet- and-greet, Mass and information session.
August 10th 22km from Middle Musquodoboit to Meagher’s Grant Community Centre
August 11th 22km to the Old School, Musquodoboit Harbour
August 12th 18km to St Therese Community Centre, Grand Desert
August 13th 17km to Lawrencetown Community Centre
August 14th 16km to Saint Andrew Parish Hall, Eastern Passage
August 15th 8km / 11km / 15km options to Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica, Halifax
A typical day following The Way of Stella Maris looks like this:
7:00am – 9:00am Wake, pack, breakfast, make lunch, load trailer
9:00am – 4:00pm Walk, rest, pray, read, journal, walk
4:00pm – 5:00pm Setup sleeping space. Relax. Socialize.
5:00pm – 6:30pm Dinner
6:30pm – 7:15pm Mass and Eucharistic Adoration
7:15pm – 7:45pm Small Group Conversation
7:45pm – 10:00pm Free time
10:00pm Lights Out
7:00am Wakey Wakey
We hope this program helps you deepen in prayer, gratitude and peace.
The Way of Stella Maris Planning Team is comprised of:
Maxine Brown email@example.com Basecamp / venue logistics
Ainslea Cardinal firstname.lastname@example.org Transportation
Dave Cardinal email@example.com Trail Operations
Sheila Kidd Sheila_Kidd@bellaliant.net Water Stations
Arlene Sibley firstname.lastname@example.org Transportation
Rob Elford email@example.com Coordinator
If you have any specific prayer requests, please send them to Tanya Noye at: firstname.lastname@example.org
We are also on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1504474466349872/
…and Twitter @thewayofstella2
I will provide another update in a month. In the interim, if you have any questions please send an email to: email@example.com
On behalf of The Way of Stella Maris Planning Team I pray each of you receives the peace of God, that surpasses all understanding.