We walked down lanes and paths, through working farms and across the grassy area above the beach that serves the dual purpose as shared grazing area for sheep and cattle, and 18 hole golf course. This is the landscape where golf was invented. No need for irrigation, manicured greens or artificial sand traps.
On our first day on Iona we met two women in their 70s and 80s from Ayrshire, Scotland who came over on the bus and ferry. Monica has been many times before, staying at the Abbey, the Bishop's House, and different lodgings on the island. We saw them at dinner, worship at the Abbey, and again at tea while we rested on our pilgrimage around the island. They became our pilgrimage friends, running into them every day until they left on Thursday. They have been friends for forty years and travel together often. We all felt blessed to run into each other and learn more about each other throughout the week.
In the morning services the liturgy reminds people of who they are in Christ, and their commitment to living for him. The leader prays the liturgy for forgiveness and people give the assurance of pardon. Then the people confess their sin and the leader assures them of God's forgiveness. "We will not make an offering that costs us nothing" is included the closing liturgy.