Bishop Stuart Robinson started his pilgrimage of the cross on Saturday, February 16 as he arrived by boat at Eden to be greeted by over 100 people.
Bishop Robinson’s pilgrimage marks the 150th anniversary of the Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn (which includes the NSW South Coast) and the Sapphire Coast Anglican Parish was the starting point of the six-week long walk for Bishop Robinson with a two metre cross.
Pastor Ossie Cruse performed the welcome to country and the bishop was also welcomed by Bega Valley Shire mayor, Bill Taylor before everyone walked through the town where a communion service was held overlooking the sea.
Following an enormous morning tea provided by many parishioners, the bishop held a rally in the afternoon. He talked about his life as an adopted son and how in later life he met with his grandfather and learnt that his grandfather had always prayed for him, not knowing what had become of his grandson.
Rector of the Sapphire Coast Parish, David Ruthven, said: “It was a very moving talk.”
He said that a lot of parishioners from Merimbula attended the event which continued the next morning with a service on the lawns of St John’s Church, Eden.
“The thing that moved me too was how parishioners had got behind the event and assisted in many ways. It really brought us together as a family,” Reverend Ruthven said.
But it was the bishop’s request for individuals to make a commitment of faith that had the most impact on Reverend Ruthven.
“A lot of people responded to the bishop’s request. I was blown away. It surprised me and moved me. The whole event had a profound impact on people and they were moved in a way that they were not usually moved. It really was a powerful time,” Reverend Ruthven said.
The pilgrimage of the cross was at Bega yesterday, Tuesday, and continues to travel north towards Batemans Bay.