Is there a spirituality of travel?

Retired diocesan priest Fr. Ralph Kleiter of Saskatoon has for years promoted travel as a pilgrim journey that includes reflection about the Sacred. (Submitted photo)

By Fr. Ralph Kleiter, Ministry to Tourism

How can we tour or cruise in such a way as to energize our lives and enhance our spiritual lives and commitments? In short, is there a transformative value in travel?

For years, in my Ministry to Tourism, I have tried to help people “discover the Sacred in reflective travel.”

There needs to be time for reflection…whether through writing in a journal or sharing/discussing experiences in a lounge or around a meal.

I like to suggest that the Sacred is all around us when we travel.

But, we need to have all our senses fully attuned. Truly, we can experience some transformation as we journey in a world saturated with the Sacred.

If we are simply tourists in our travels, who travel frantically desiring escape, distractions and amusements, we may too often not come closer to what is necessary and beneficial for our well-being. We become travellers who have lost any sense of passion and wonder. We become immune to the very beauty around us during our travels. This can be a danger for frequent travellers.

We need to travel or journey today, more so then ever, more like pilgrims seeking to find the Sacred and desiring to transform ourselves through union with our God (the Sacred), others and the world. As pilgrims we need to perceive the entire world saturated with the magnificence and splendour of the Sacred. When this happens to us we will radiate a transformation in our lives and people will notice.

Finally, as we enjoy enrichment and  transformation during our travels we will be filled with deep gratitude for life, for home and for all that sustains us. Indeed, our rediscovery of a spirituality of travel will find us looking at things differently because we take time to  travel reflectively!


For more information about upcoming travel events or about Ministry to Tourism, contact Rev. Ralph Kleiter at | (306) 262-4120 or visit the website:

Upcoming Pilgrim Journeys include:

  • Collette’s Costa Rica- A World of Nature – Dec 2-13, 2023.
  • Christmastime at Sea– C. Serenity Miami round trip Dec 23-Jan 5, 2024.
  • Caribbean Winter Escape– C. Serenity Miami round trip Jan 5-18, 2024.
  • Collette’s Egypt/Jordan, “Moses to Promised Land” Oct 12-27, 2024.
  • Around Ancient Seas, Mediterranean & Adriatic Discovery, Rome/Florence-Athens, Oct 27-Nov 11, 2024 (Oceania’s new Vista).
  • Athens-Rome, Nov 11-20, 2024 (with pre/post cruise land programs in  Greece and Rome).
  • Maritimes Coastal Wonders, “Canada’s Autumn Glory” Sept 22-Oct 2, 2024.
  • Beyond Epic Empires to Modern Marvels, Athens-Dubai, UAE, Dec 6-23, 2024 (Crystal Symphony).