Step by step – Annie Gurner

It was a joy to be invited to join NOF, to be part of the send off and to read of all the exploits in Wales. Travelling up to Scotland for our leg, I already knew there might be a delay in Rival Star reaching Ayrshire, so we found a temporary berth and started navigating around the local islands to honour some of the lesser known Celtic pilgrims. So we first travelled to Cumbrae and there at the Cathedral of the Isles / College of the Holy spirit, we walked a labyrinth. “An inner life is developed step by step” Br Roger of Taize. The labyrinth takes over all control of direction, and as you slowly walk it, the parallel with our pilgrimage is evident. Sometimes the twists and turns in life are counter-intuitive, or even unwelcome, but if we remain open to what each day brings- the people, the sights and sounds, the Presence… Then our God of surprises will honour our journeying. And, as I sat in the middle of the labyrinth, I knew myself held in His hand. In the Cathedral porch we found some of the oldest Celtic cross remains in Scotland, found on the Isle – and, when we stepped inside to join the Sunday worship, I found my old friend Alec Boyd (last seen in Lincolnshire 10 years ago) leading the welcome and service. So we had opportunities to share the NOF story again. Bizarrely, waiting to hire cycles later, a pretty woman in a periwinkle dress saw my shirt and shouted “Navigators of Faith, high five!” As she pedaled by…