Bishop Stuart Robinson had a smile on his face and a spring in his step as he embarked on a pilgrimage that will eventually lead him to Canberra’s parliamentary circle on Easter Sunday.
Carrying a two-metre cross, complete with a wheel on its base, the Bishop made his entrance at Snug Cove on Saturday morning aboard a tug boat and in the company of the Eden Sea Scouts.
Joining him in prayer before an ESSCI breakfast were many local pastors and Christians, as well as others who had journeyed to Eden to help carry the cross on its journey.
Following a service by Reverend Joy Harris, Pastor Ossie Cruse led the congregation in a hymn, playing his trademark gumleaf.
“I’ve not heard that before,” the Bishop beamed.
“Meeting people in this way is lovely and encouraging.”
The group then set off for Warren’s Walk to celebrate Eucharist in the Eden RSL park followed by morning tea.
One man, who touted an authentic ram’s horn, blew regular blasts to clear their way.
Saturday’s event concluded at the hall with a bishop’s rally at 5pm.
On Sunday pilgrims celebrated with a simple communion service at St John’s Church.
Bishop Robinson said he was spiritually and physically prepared for the six-week pilgrimage.
“I’m eager to explain the Christian message, the significance of the cross, Christ’s death and resurrection and how people can share friendship with Christ,” he said.
“My fitness is good, I do between seven and 10 kilometres every day and I run with my dog, who loves chasing roos on the lead, so that’s my resistance training!”
Reverend David Ruthven was very happy with the congregation’s response to the event.
“A lot of people came forward to respond to the bishop and it was obvious he really had an impact on them,” he said.
“We had close to 100 at the service on Sunday morning, which was a large number for us, normally we’d have about 15.
“On a personal level I’m so thankful to all the people in this parish, I’m so proud of them and the work they have done – it all clicked into place.”
The pilgrimage continues up the coast this week reaching Narooma and Bodalla today (Thursday), spending Friday in Moruya and Broulee before arriving in Batemans Bay on Saturday.