One of the most popular pilgrimage sites in Europe is Iona, a small island off the western coast of Scotland where Columba, an Irish monk, came in the sixth century to share the light of the Christian gospel. Today, modern day Protestants, Catholics, and seekers come to this rocky and wind-swept place for a week-long retreat of silence, study, prayer and communion with others. Mystics call it a "thin place" that facilitates easy access from this world to the invisible realm.
The modern day pilgrims stay at the abbey and savor the intimations of Christians who have lived and worked there over the centuries. Some of them talk about the peace they feel at Iona.. The hundred or so people from different parts of the world take a walking tour of the island, singing hymns along the way. When they reach the sea, they are asked to pick up a stone, to think about a burden they are carrying, and then to imagine that burden being released as they throw the stone into the water. On the last day, the pilgrims participate in the ritual of the Lord's Supper.
This 30-minute documentary nicely conveys the spirit of Iona and its soothing and spiritually satisfying impact on the pilgrims. Croagh Patrick (Ireland), Medjugorje (Bosnia), Santiago de Compostela (Spain), Fatima (Portugal) and Lourdes (France) are some of the other pilgrimage sites featured in this 12-part series.