Gather at the River: a Paddling Pilgrimage on the Connecticut River
Join Washington National Cathedral and Kairos Earth for a unique pilgrimage experience as we take to the waters of the Connecticut River. Surrounded by the beauty of forests, fields, and the flowing river, this pilgrimage invites us into a place of gratitude for the natural world and reflection on our role as part of God’s creation. Experience days shaped by a rhythm of prayer and paddling by canoe or kayak while exploring how rivers play an integral role in our ecological, social, economic, and spiritual lives.
Two sessions are available: join one or both as we travel further downriver.
- Session I: Sunday, May 31–Wednesday, June 3
- Session II: Wednesday, June 3–Saturday, June 6 2020
Cost: $1400 per session
Apply by April 1, 2020 at Kairos Earth
A Daily Rhythm
Days begin with morning prayer and breakfast before our day’s travel, when we leave the shores of Vermont for the waters of the river. The contemplative silence of morning prayer extends to our first hour of paddling to take in the serenity and beauty of the river in the morning calm. Our midday stop includes a simple lunch and a brief time of prayer and a Creation-centered spiritual practice. Evenings at host churches and camp sites include free time before dinner and an opportunity to gather in community for prayer and reflection before bedtime.
Along our daily journey on the river, we take a break from paddling, stopping to honor sacred places of special importance (such as a confluence and falls), as well as places of pain and destruction (such as dams, pollution and former battlefields). Discover how a pilgrimage on the river can deepen awareness to the present moment, to our bodily senses, and to expanding conscious relationships with creation and with one another.
Pilgrimage Cost & Application
$1400 per session cost includes:
- Canoes (plus paddles and personal flotation devices/life jackets)
- 24/7 professional outdoor & spiritual guiding
- Off-river support
- All food & potable water
- Group cooking gear
- River of Life Prayer Book
- River of Life yellow wicking hat
- Basic medical kit
- Transportation from a designated meeting spot in New Hampshire to Pilgrimage segment beginning location, plus transportation at the end of your paddling segment to a designated return location
Cost does NOT include travel to and from New Hampshire, travel insurance, and personal expenses.
Deposit of $500 to Washington National Cathedral (including a non-refundable $250 deposit) is due upon notice of registration (acceptance of application). Full payment is due April 15, 2020. Final payment includes $250 donation to the Center for Prayer and Pilgrimage to be recognized in calendar year 2020.
No refunds will be offered after April 15, 2020. Prior to April 15, refunds will be offered on a sliding scale depending on cancellation date and whether pilgrimage spots are all filled.
The pilgrimage is suitable for all ages and all levels of paddling experience. Kairos Earth will review and accept applications to ensure pilgrim health and well-being and to create a safe paddling experience for everyone—almost everyone who applies is able to join our River of Life Pilgrimages.