This Pilgrim’s Progress

With the weather taking a turn for the worse, we nixed a sojourn in Canada and headed south. Today found me touring Plymouth, MA. The landing site for the early colonists, combined with a gloomy, wet day that spurred my introspection, got me thinking about pilgrims.

Define pilgrim.

As John and I wandered down Water Street to view the Mayflower II, a replica of the original that sailed from Plymouth, England to Plymouth, MA in 1957,


then over to Plymouth Rock…

and around the area where the early colonists struggled to survive…

I was focused on the pilgrims I first learned about in grammar school. I thought about the play I wrote in 5th grade which my teacher graciously allowed the class to perform before the Thanksgiving break. For decades, these black-clad, austerely righteous folk who feasted with the Native Americans were the only pilgrims I ever contemplated.

Then, a trip to Jerusalem while on business in Israel in the late 90s caused me to think a bit about religious pilgrimages.

When I married a man who loves to wander the globe and I began to journey with him, I viewed pilgrims in a different light. I saw myself as one.

Today, it occurred to me that we are all pilgrims — wanderers looking for that which makes us feel safest and surest in a universe that deems us as insignificant as a grain of sand.  Life is a pilgrimage for that which we hold sacred. Some seek the control found in wealth and power  Others chase celebrity. And still others, like me, are on a spiritual quest for contentment, a “peace that surpasses understanding.”

What does “pilgrim” mean to you?

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4 Responses to This Pilgrim’s Progress

  1. Lisa says:

    My family were May Flowers. But I have never even seen the area. It means very little to me. Douglas County and Blount County Alabama mean more to me.

  2. Shannon says:

    I’m with you mom. Life is just a pilramage to what you define as happiness. The difficult part is defining that happiness. Once you’ve figured that out, the journey can begin.

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