I brought my family along while I participated in the recent Veriditas Walking a Sacred Path Pilgrimage to Chartres - where I enjoyed the beautiful offering by Lauren Artress and Catherine Anderson, Unlocking Your Gifts: The Labyrinth as a Portal to Your Soul’s Calling. If you have ever considered a pilgrimage to Europe, I encourage you to go to Chartres with Veriditas. It is a rich and deeply nourishing week in which you walk the labyrinth in a private evening ceremony in the cathedral. It’s magnificent!
Where was I? Oh yes, traveling with my family. My son is a typical rambunctious 4 year old. Patience with him can be hard to find, unless I try to see the world through his eyes. "Grown ups" go to Chartres to experience a sacred cathedral on a holy hill. Children play wherever they are.
My son reminds me that there are many ways to approach the sacred. And he shows me how to experience a place in a different way - whether that's trailing his hands along the rough texture of ancient walls, running through cobblestoned streets and whacking unsuspecting locals with balloons, or giggling his way up and down cathedral steps. I’m there for the glimpses of majesty and mystery - for inspiration. He is in awe of the builders, plays with stones, and constructs mounds at the foot of the cathedral.
Yet at the end of our week, I discovered that Chartres had worked its magic on him, too: That tender 4 year old paused on the steps of the south porch of the Cathedral and said, “Mommy, let’s sit here and watch the world."