The Saint Edmund Heritage experience at Saint Michael's College was formulated in the early years of Dr. Marc vanderHeyden's presidency. He and his wife, Dana Lim vanderHeyden, organized the first "pilgrimage" to France in 1998 as a way of bring about a deeper consciousness of the College's historical roots to the Community.
In 2002, the concept of the heritage trip was enlarged to incorporate the rich intellectual legacy of Edmund of Abingdon, the 13th century Oxford scholar who became archbishop of Canterbury and patron saint of the Society of Saint Edmund, which founded the College. The name was then changed to the Saint Edmund Heritage Tour in order to reflect both the academic importance of Saint Edmund and the Edmundite presence in France.
The Saint Edmund Heritage Tour has become a tradition at Saint Michael's College. To date, nearly 150 faculty, staff, alumni and friends have enjoyed this experience which has evolved into a reflective way to learn about the College's history.
The Tour begins in England, where Edmund spent most of his life, and travels to France to follow his legacy in the establishment of the Edmundite order.
In England, we are based at Oxford, where Edmund taught in the early 13thcentury. From Oxford, we visit the most important towns in Saint Edmund's life: Abingdon, Salisbury, Calne, Canterbury, and Dover. Each day's activities may include videos, tours, and lectures by scholars to provide insight into Edmund's life and its historical context.
Crossing the English Channel, in France, we explore sites of importance in Normandy and Burgundy, in places like the Mont-Saint-Michel and the Pontigny Abbey as a way of telling the Edmundite and Saint Michael's College story.
Download the Saint Edmund Heritage Tour Brochure