Pilgrim Parishes

Working together in the Blackmore Vale

Working across the Blackmore Vale

Pilgrim Parishes

The Blackmore Vale Deanery, in which Marnhull is situated, has been shaped to ensure there are parish clusters, north and south, for mutual support and fellowship for both clergy and parishes.  The southern cluster, comprising of clergy from the rural villages which include Child Okeford, Stalbridge, Shillingstone, Hazelbury Bryan, and Sturminster Newton includes training curates, and experienced clergy committed to collaborative ministry.  The benefices formed their own Convenant as the Pilgrim Group of parishes a number of years ago and have shared together in a week of pilgrimage each year as well as other activities.

Doing a Home Pilgrimage

At your front door 

Have someone stand inside the house to let the others in whilst the rest of the household stand outside. Those outside knock on the door and enter, as they enter, greet each other with a welcome. Or if you live on your own, come in through your front door and think of all those who have crossed its threshold while you have lived there. 

Bible Verse

Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. Revelation 3:20


Blessed are you, Welcoming God.
As your people come and go from this door,
be their constant companion on the way,
and welcome them upon their return,
so that coming and going
they may be sustained by your presence. 

We thank you for those who still come to our doors – 
all delivery drivers and postmen, 
and the friend leaving a mute gift.

May every grudge or malice be left at the door,
and may those who brought them be so touched by grace here,
that they forget to collect them when they leave.

In your sitting room 

Do you have a place (or does your pet have a place too) where you or they always like to sit? What is it about this space you like? What do you do to relax? Have you taken up or increased what you do during lock down? Has work load increased and relaxation is harder to come by? Has concentrating become harder? How could centering on God help relaxation?

Bible verse

By the seventh day God had finished his work, and so he rested. God blessed the seventh day and made it special because on that day he rested from his work. Genesis 2:2-3


Blessed are you, Gracious God,
for you have provided this place for unwinding 
and enjoying company.

Give your blessing to all who share this room, that they may find joy in their relaxation,
and always be generous in attention giving.

May all who gather here
be knit together in fellowship on earth, 
and find a first taste here
of the communion of your saints in heaven.

When have you laughed in this room? Think about what made you laugh. Can you build fun things into your day. Thank God for all the fun things you do together and pray that he helps you to make space to do them more often.

In the bathroom 

Having running hot and cold water is an incredible luxury not shared by so many in our world. Remember times when you have not been able to wash or been grubby and dirty. How did it make you feel?

Bible verse

Jesus rose from the table, poured some water into a bowl and began to wash the disciples’ feet. When he came to Peter, Peter refused to have is feet washed by Jesus. Jesus answered him, you do not understand what I am doing, but later you will. If I don’t wash your feet you can no longer be my disciple. John 13: 4 –7


Blessed are you, Creating God,
for you made us as whole persons – bodies, minds and spirits – 
and you called us good.

Give us a proper respect and love for our bodies,
keeping them clean and healthy,
so that we may glorify you in them,
as we confidently wait for you to clothe us
in robes of righteousness.

In your kitchen 

Count how many different sorts of food you have in your cupboards. Where in the world does all the food come from? 

Bible verse

Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. John 6:35


Blessed are you, Plentiful God,
for you supply our every need according to your great riches.

May this kitchen always be filled with the produce of the earth,
and may the preparations here be filled with pleasure and love.

Bless the hands that work in this place, 
and fill us with gratitude for your provision.

Thank God for the food he provides for you and your family. 

Pray also for those who don’t have enough food and for all the foodbanks helping to feed struggling families. 

In the bedroom 

Everyone sits on the bed/s and the person/people who sleep in this room say what they most like about their bedroom. They could share their funniest/weirdest dream.

Bible verse

In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, LORD, make me dwell in safety.  Psalm 4:8


Blessed are you, Sheltering God,
for you are the true rest of your people
and you cover each person
with the soft shelter of your wings.

Bless to your people
their hours of rest and refreshment,
that sleeping they might rest in peace,
and waking they may rise to serve you
all the days of their life.

If there is space everyone lies down, closes their eyes and is silent for two minutes (try not to fall asleep) Reflect on God being with you as you sleep and rest. Read the Bible verse again and all say “Amen”.

Through the week

Is there a place in your house you go to be quiet? Where do you pray? Many of us are praying at our computers. Can you find a visual image to put on your desk to help focus your thoughts on God?

Tea Service