In 2005 the first Grace Pilgrimage took place with about 40 international participants under the guidance of Sabine Lichtenfels and Benjamin von Mendelssohn. Kate Bunney produced all the Grace Pilgrimages and acted as Public Relations coordinator and Educator. The pilgrimage moved through northern Israel and the West Bank, ending in Jerusalem. On November 9th, upon entering the West Bank, the group celebrated the first Global Grace Day in front of the Israeli Separation Wall.
November 9th was appointed Global Grace Day because it is historically connected with two outstanding happenings. One is “Crystal Night” in 1938, which was a prelude of the horrors of the Holocaust. Quite differently, the Berlin Wall fell on November 9, 1989, initiating the end of the Cold War. People all over the world, on both sides of the wall, were shaken with joy for the reunification.
Grace Pilgrimages are peace actions for courageously taking an outer stand and for profound inner change. The participants learn about crisis areas in a special way. They go on foot, content with the simplest accommodations, and have time to see and listen. They come in the name of Grace, compassion beyond all ideologies. They want to end the war wherever it is created between people.
In 2007 another Grace Pilgrimage was held in Israel-Palestine, organized by Kate Bunney. It covered a distance of nearly 350km from Eilat across the desert to Jerusalem. In 2008 it went through the rainforest in Colombia and in 2010 it was through the Colombian capital Bogotá, again organized by Kate Bunney. Both times were acts of solidarity with the Colombian peace community San José de Apartadó. In 2009 eighty pilgrims walked through Portugal in the name of Grace – from the Stone Circle in Évora, a prehistoric monument, to a symbol of the future, the opening of the Solar Village Test Field in Tamera. From 2011-2013 the pilgrimages again took place in the Middle East.
Overview of the Grace pilgrimages and Global Grace Day:
2006: Berlin, Holocaust memorial
2008: Pilgrimage to important places of the Peace Community San José de Apartadó, Colombia
2009: Portugal, from the stone circle of Évora up to the stone circle of Tamera
2010: Bogotá, Colombia
2011: several places worldwide
2013: Activities at the Global-Campus base stations: Favela de Paz (Brazil), Tulkarem (Palestine), Israel, Kitale (Kenya), San José de Apartadó (Colombia), Alentejo (Portugal)
2015: Walking Water (Los Angeles) – Participation of Sabine Lichtenfels and Benjamin von Mendelssohn.
More information: walking-water.org
2016: – Walking Water Portugal – combination of Grace pilgrimage with Walking Water – a pilgrimage in Portugal
GLOBAL GRACE DAY – 9th November
Groups and individuals all over the world are invited to organize events in the name of “Grace” in their respective locations for Global Grace Day on November 9th. This day can incorporate artistic actions with music or public meditations in the middle of a city. Accompanying these actions is a meditation text, written by Sabine Lichtenfels, and translated into several languages, which is read, studied and distributed on this day.
In recent years Global Grace Day has become more and more an action day for a budding movement – in many places in the world, creatively, and with all its power is taking a stand for a positive perspective.