with Cate Macfarlane and Steve Evemy
When we took a group of eight, including two leaders, to the Holy Island of Lindisfarne in May 2010, we had two aims : to explore the island, and to walk sections of Saint Cuthbert’s Way, between Lindisfarne and Melrose, all in an ambience of Celtic Christianity, inspired by St Cuthbert and the other early Christians who made this charming and remote island their home so many years ago.
After devoting the first day entirely to getting to know the island, we ventured onto the mainland for part at least of all the remaining days, using our hired minibus. We walked three sections of St Cuthbert’s Way, including the most easterly part to St Cuthbert’s Cave, and the most westerly section, from Dryburgh Abbey over the Eildon Hills into Melrose.
We also took a boat trip to the Farne Islands, where St Cuthbert lived in seclusion in a windswept shelter and which now provide a home to countless seabirds; on another day we walked around St Abbs Head, enjoying the cliff-top walk and the grand views in the May sunshine.
All our outings were optional. Some of the group preferred to spend more time on the island. We were guests of Marygate House, where we were very well accommodated, fed, and cared for, and where we had access to their well-stocked library, as well as to the other religious centres on the island.
Our worship, twice daily, was an important part of our time together. A high point was a Celtic mass celebrated for us by one of our number who was a minister in the Episcopal Church in the USA.
Alas, the week ended all too soon. Farewells were said at Berwick station, and the minibus returned, empty, to its base. We have, however, a spiritual gain that remains with us.
Steve Evemy TOP
St Cuthbert's Isle
St Abb's Head
Along St Cuthbert's Way