Pilgrimage of Orthodox Believers

Pilgrimage is a long-standing tradition that is revered by all Christians. It was consecrated by the feet of Jesus Christ, who went to Jerusalem with His Mother and the holy righteous Joseph to celebrate Easter. This is stated in the Gospel. Church archiereus, pastors, and monks have followed the tradition of making pilgrimages for many centuries. The pilgrims were also laypeople who wanted to worship Orthodox shrines and read a prayer in front of them.

The protracted period of theomachy has finally ended. The desire of people to make a pilgrimage to the places of the earthly feat of Jesus Christ, the Most Holy Theotokos, and the holy saints of God began to grow. A huge number of believers make a pilgrimage to touch the shrines, to be spiritually healed while visiting monastic monasteries, and to enter into a conversation with like-minded people today as many centuries ago. The number of pilgrimage routes is increasing. Their geography is also expanding.

The way of life of an Orthodox believer necessarily includes a pilgrimage to the main shrines. It is also the starting point of the path to God for many people who need spiritual guidance.

The Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Alexy II

“I will extol thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever.
Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever.”

Ps. 145:1-2


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Pilgrimage: The Importance and Role in Human Life

Pilgrimage aspects

The spiritual enlightenment of a person is a key aspect of the pilgrimage. People who visit the shrines can touch their history and traditions, learn the peculiarities of worship, get acquainted with the saints and ascetics of piety who dedicated their lives to the holy places that are part of the pilgrimage route.

During the pilgrimage, a person gets the opportunity to engage in conversation with the inhabitants of religious communities and ask them for spiritual advice.

Role of Pilgrimage

Pilgrimage is of considerable importance in general education. The buildings in which monasteries and temples are located have always been cultural centers. Icons, books, the results of folk crafts, and works of applied art have accumulated in them for many centuries.

Monastic and temple buildings, especially those built before the 18th century, were prime examples of certain architectural eras. That is why the trip of pilgrims is a good opportunity to touch the history, traditions of handicrafts, icon painting, and architecture of the Orthodox World.


“As you wander, beware of the idle and lustful demon; for wandering gives him a reason to tempt us.” 
St. John of the Ladder

If, when we visit holy places, we do not receive spiritual benefit, then the fault is with us, and therefore we should reproach ourselves, and not blame the place or anything else.” 
St. Ambrose of Optina

Pilgrimage Trips

The spiritual work of a person who strives to find something useful for his soul during a pilgrimage trip is at its heart. Pilgrims have the opportunity to worship the relics of the saints, read a prayer in front of the miraculous icons, become participants in the services held at the holy places, and purify themselves in the holy springs.

“Praise ye the LORD. Sing unto the LORD a new song, and his praise in the congregation of saints.”

Ps. 149:1



Parting Words

You should not try to visit as many shrines as possible in one trip. The main thing is to get joy and find peace of mind during the pilgrimage. To do this, it is recommended to:
- avoid the fuss;
- restrain the condemnation of the neighbor;
- die the urge to engage in idle conversations;
- focus on the main thing and remember the main purpose of the trip.
May the Guardian Angel bless you!

“Those who worship the cross with faith and love know the power inherent in it and use it to defeat the devil.”
(St. John Chrysostom)

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