A few weeks ago I was contacted by a fellow pilgrimage enthusiast and long distance walker, David Pott who is the project leader of the Two Saints Way. This is a project which will hopefully signal the revival of other, mostly forgotten pilgrimage routes. David’s work links together the cathedral cities of Chester and Lichfield along a pilgrimage path based on a story trail relating to the legend of the founding of Stone. This legend possesses references to both Saint Chad whose shrine can be found in Lichfield and Saint Werburgh whose shrine can found Chester (hence the name of the pathway). This pathway offers an authentic pilgrimage experience incorporating not only the spiritual elements but also the social aspects of such a journey including story-telling. Another feature of the pilgrimage is the revival of “Whacky Customs” including bringing stones to Stone, foot washing at Lichfield cathedral and the marking of the forearm with a cross.
I am both envious of and delighted by the work which David and the rest of the Two Saints Way organisers have done. This is an amazing achievement by people dedicated not only to reviving physical pilgrimages centred on spiritual healing but also drawing attention to the historical importance of pilgrimages in the middle ages.
I would encourage anybody who has an interest in walking pilgrimage routes, be they modern or medieval, to consider the Two Saints Way. Please click on the link here to find out more about this fantastic project!