Llandaff churches gear up for centenary with year of pilgrimage

The Church in Wales in Llandaff Diocese is embarking on an ambitious Year of Pilgrimage to reinvigorate its work and worship as part of the Church’s 2020 centenary celebrations.

And to launch the programme, the Bishop of Llandaff, June Osborne, has announced that the next ‘Clergy School’ will take the form of a pilgrimage. Priests from the more than 100 churches in Llandaff will travel to Santiago de Compostela in Northern Spain – the location of the shrine of St James the Apostle, which for many centuries has been the destination of pilgrimage routes known as ‘The Camino’.

This regular clergy school, in May 2019, will be used to train and equip priests to teach and lead pilgrimage in their own communities.

Bishop June says that visiting such a significant site of Christian pilgrimage represents confidence in the future mission of the Diocese. “We really value and appreciate the hard work of our clergy and know that such an uplifting project will benefit both them and the people they lead and serve.

“I recognise that such a bold initiative is likely to raise eyebrows. But it does represent an injection of hope and confidence – and joy – for the present and future of the Church in Wales. Our focus in Llandaff is using pilgrimage as a means of spiritual renewal, as well as a practical demonstration of our work within a modern Wales.

“This exciting venture is different and ambitious, and I am sure our priests will return refreshed and renewed, ready to work with their congregations and communities towards the centenary and beyond.”

As part of the Church in Wales centenary, all parishes in Wales will each be asked to take on a specific practical project and the six Dioceses are being encouraged to have pilgrimages to their cathedrals. Llandaff has decided to commence the centenary celebrations with a whole Year of Pilgrimage, starting with the Clergy School in May 2019.

The Llandaff Clergy School is held every three years and the cost for it is met from a dedicated budget.