The small island, known as the cradle of Christianity in Scotland, is where the college’s patron saint commenced his 34-year long mission to bring Christianity to the pagan tribes and has since become the centre of Gaelic monasticism and a place of spiritual retreat.
St Columba College at Andrews Farm is a unique Anglican and Catholic R-12 school with both churches recognising St Columba as a saint. It was established in 1996 as an ecumenical initiative of the Anglican and Catholic Archbishops of Adelaide.
Year 12 student Jordan Clarke said he was looking forward to discovering the journey of St Columba and what he did as a Christian on the Isle of Iona.
“For me, this journey will make a path for future pilgrims from the college and our experiences of walking in the shoes of St Columba in Scotland will help to inspire students to take this journey when they are in the senior years of school,” he said.
Iona pilgrimage coordinator and deputy principal Mr Wayne Gladigau said the itinerary included destinations and activities centred on the history and traditions of the two churches in the United Kingdom and on the life, values and mission of St Columba.
“We are going to trace the thread of the Anglican and Catholic history through London by visiting key places where King Henry’s presence and influence carved and created the Anglican Church from the Church of England,” he said.
The pilgrims will visit a number of historical sites in London and Edinburgh including Canterbury Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, St Paul’s Cathedral, Buckingham Palace and Edinburgh Castle before taking the ferry to Iona where St Columba set up a monastery.
“That’s a really significant part because we are the only St Columba school in Adelaide, so to be able to create a link between the man who lived and the school that we are is really important.”
The students will also connect with a disadvantaged community in London and a number of fundraising activities have been held principally to support that element of the pilgrimage.
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