Monthly newspaper World of Orthodoxy, №11 2010
In November 2000, with the blessing of His Beatitude Cornelius, Metropolitan of Tallinn and All Estonia, the head of the Center Andrey Nikolaevich Yakovlev began to carry out the difficult task of organizing pilgrim trips to holy places for every Christian who wants to worship Orthodox shrines in joint prayer, and thus, come in contact with the history and basics of Christianity. By now, more than a thousand Estonians have visited these special places of sanctuary in Russia and in the Holy Land. … .
Pilgrimage has been a popular activity since ancient times. Believers from all parts of the world are naturally attracted by the places with great power – where Christianity was born, where Jesus Christ lived, and where saints performed their miracles. It’s hard to underestimate the importance of such a trip for the person’s body and soul.
Established in 1999 with the blessing of Metropolitan Cornelius, Bishop of Tallinn and All Estonia, the Center aims to guide Orthodox people seeking ways to be closer to God and spiritual wisdom. For this purpose, pilgrim tours are organized. We want to share our experience with the brothers and sisters in faith and make the pilgrimage accessible to everyone.
Although the Center is based in Tallinn (Estonia), the list of our destinations includes other countries. You can start small – with a day trip to a local monastery or church in another town – and gradually become closer to the ultimate dream of every Christian – pilgrimage to the Holy Land.
Such a trip will strengthen your faith, allow you to pray in front of the centuries-old icons, and learn more about Christianity than you ever read in books.
Our mission as a Pilgrim Center
Our aim is to give every believer an opportunity to become closer to God and experience the bliss and grace of visiting world-famous Christian sanctuaries.
Praying in front of miraculous icons can heal a person’s body and soul. Bathing in holy springs can cure many illnesses. By touching the history of Christianity, a believer becomes wiser and happier.
Our mission is to make pilgrimages accessible for everyone. People who have never been abroad, don’t speak foreign languages, or are simply afraid of long trips alone can join us on our tours to the holy sites of Estonia and the world.
The Andcross Pilgrim Center wants each journey not to be about tourism and going from one place to another. Every holy site is special and should be visited properly: during our pilgrimages, we often attend church services, learn about monastic life, talk to monks, nuns, and the clergy, and spend our time with like-minded people.
The Orthodox presence can be noticed everywhere in the world: multiple sanctuaries, monasteries, churches, and important places are scattered across the planet: Greece, Israel, Palestine, Russia, Georgia, etc. Helping believers see these great sites is one of the goals of our Pilgrim Center in Tallinn.
Pilgrimage allows people to touch the history of Christianity, participate in church services, talk to clergymen and absorb their wisdom, find new friends, and enrich their knowledge. Our tours are more than just trips from A to B. They are also spiritual journeys that change people’s attitude and thinking.
Such a trip (even a daily trip to a new monastery) can significantly improve the life of a Christian. There are numerous examples and witnesses of the miraculous nature of pilgrimage. Sincere prayer in front of a wonder-working icon can heal the deadliest diseases. Plunging into the holy springs grants grace and health. Talking with monks and nuns about faith gives new knowledge.
Pilgrim tours with Andcross
Unlike praying, pilgrimage is a rare experience in the life of a believer. Our Center makes everything to ensure that every person is prepared for a trip – both mentally and physically.
We know how important a pilgrim tour is: there are so many aspects to worry about. That is why we take care of every single detail.
- Before the journey, we provide our pilgrims with important information about weather and road conditions. We recommend what to take and how to dress.
- On the road, we learn the brief history of the place we are visiting, read prayers, or listen to psalms. A priest accompanies our groups during every trip.
- Upon arrival, pilgrims can focus on connecting to God and worshiping the Orthodox sanctuaries. Everything else (accommodation, food, transfers) is already taken care of.
We regularly organize trips to the following destinations: Estonia, Russia, Greece, Georgia, and Israel. The schedule of upcoming trips is posted on our website. Feel free to message us if you have any questions. Visit our GALLERY to see photos from previous pilgrim tours.
Contact us to learn more
Naturally, a person may have dozens of questions before signing up for a trip in the company of strangers. The Andcross Pilgrim Center is ready to answer all your questions, share our vast experience in traveling abroad, and help you with choosing the best tour for strengthening your faith and gaining spiritual wisdom.
Our email for all inquiries about pilgrim tours: firstname.lastname@example.org
Feel free to contact us and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
Pilgrim Ecclesiastic Educational Centre Andcross