Church History Tours

Douglas & Cheryl Bond

ARMISTICE and CHURCH HISTORY TOUR--2018

2018--Armistice/Church History Tour:

In commemoration of the Armistice ending World War I in 1918, join us on the sobering tour of the vast labyrinth of trenches in the Western Front, the more than 125 military cemeteries (40 % of those interred "Known only to God,"). The memorials and museums are some of the very finest I have ever visited in my life of traveling, most set right in the subterranean fortifications used in the Great War.

We will fly in and out of Paris. After seeing the sites in Paris, we will launch into the WW I sites in the Western Front, Arras, Wellington Quarry, Musee de Somme, Thiepval, Amiens, where CS Lewis was wounded (setting of War in the Wasteland, my historical novel on teen atheist 2/Lt CS Lewis in WW I); andd WW II sites in Normandy: Omaha Beach, Saint-Mere Eglise, Dunkirk, many others. We will also explore Church history sites throughout the regions, including Amiens cathedral, Chartres, Abbey des Hommes in Caen, Noyon, Rouen, and many others. The tour will be in June when the poppies are in bloom and the weather is mild.

Contact me today if you are interested in this exciting and sobering tour bondbooks.net@gmail.com or 253-381-1961 (Ground Cost per person for the 11-day tour will be $2,850)

Registration for ARMISTICE 2018 Tour (June/July--final dates coming)

Contact me today to reserve your place on this memorable tour 253-381-1961 or bondbooks.net@gmail.com

TOTAL Ground Cost per traveler (including luxury coach travel, entrance to museums, 20 meals, 10 night hotel stays, guided tours on the ground) $2,850:

$200 Deposit and signed tour contract

$800 First payment

$1000 Second payment

Final balance due

2018 Bond Tour of the WESTERN FRONT and beyond

Will follow many of the locations that were the setting for my World War I novel WAR IN THE WASTELAND, in which teen atheist 2/Lt CS Lewis plays an important role as antagonist. I prepared to write the book and lead the Armistice Tour the summer of 2014, exploring many of the subterranean nooks and crannies of the Western Front.

 

 

Se highlights from the English Church History and Hymn Tour 2016

ENGLISH CHURCH HISTORY & HYMN TOUR--July 2-12, 2016

Description of the ENGLISH CHURCH HISTORY TOUR

Itinerary: July 2-12, 2016

"Seeing the grace of God exalted in the teaching and preaching throughout the tour--Bond serves the Church universal with these tours. I learned so much I never learned in school." Rome to Geneva Tour, 2015

REGISTER TODAY

"This tour totally exceeded all my expectations!" Rome to Geneva, 2015

REDEEMED READER podcast interview on Bond Church History Tours

HYMN WRITERS & HYMNS that will be sung and explored on the tour

HOW TO PACK and other travel details

"We appreciate that tours with Douglas & Cheryl Bond are accessible and affordable for families." Canadian family with children ages 6-18  

"To stand in Rome where Paul wrote II Timothy--it was breathtaking!" Rome to Geneva Tour, 2015

Description of ENGLISH CHURCH HISTORY TOUR--July 2-12, 2016

An exciting adventure, exploring all things English (Anglophiles and tea drinkers will love this tour), especially:

--Hymns and hymn writers: Watts, Toplady, Cowper...

--The legacy of the Morning Star of the Reformation, John Wycliffe

--The enduring legacy of Charles Spurgeon

--English Reformers (including a Scottish connection with John Knox who lived and preached in London for a time)

--Sites related to English Puritans (Richard Sibbes, an all-time favorite of mine) and the Westminster Confession and the 1689 London Confessions of Faith,

--Sites from the life of CS Lewis, and much more

Hymn writers of England have contributed more to Christian worship all around the world than any other poets from anywhere else on the planet. We will explore the homes, churches, villages, castles, cathedrals, and abbeys where many of the most gifted hymn writers lived and wrote, including Watts, Toplady, Newton, Cowper, and many others. 

It would be difficult to overstate the importance of John Wycliffe in the rediscovering of the Word of God in the language of the people. We will explore Oxford, the epicenter of his ministry of translation, teaching, and sending out his "Poor Preachers," the Lollards all over Britain with the Bible and the gospel of free grace in Jesus alone.

I am a daily reader of the "Prince of Preachers," Baptist preacher Charles Haddon Spurgeon. Few men point me more passionately to the grace of Redeemer King Jesus than this godly and gifted saint. We will visit The Metropolitan Tabernacle where so many heard his warm and powerful proclamation of the doctrines of free grace in Christ alone. 

We will explore the places in London and Oxford related to the Reformation and the "Knox of England," Hugh Latimer, and his companions, Ridley and Cranmer who were martyred at the stake in 1555 and 1556 in Oxford.

We will explore the enduring importance of the Puritans, including a visit to Westminster Abbey where we will see the places where 17th century English and Scottish Puritans--godly men, their Bibles wide open in front of them--crafted the incomparable WCF and later the Baptist London Confession of Faith.

Participants in this tour will visit where CS Lewis lived, worshiped, taught, and where he is buried, including The Eagle & Child where both Lewis and Tolkien met for Inklings and where Lord of the Rings and Narnia where first read aloud and critiqued.

And much more (Jane Austen, John Donne, Milton, other literary giants) ...

"Bond is the most apt, able and wonderful tour guide that has walked the earth! Such enthusiasm and knowledge! The folks who go on Bond tours get an unforgettable education! Thanks for all of the blessings!" (England Church History Tour, 2012

ENGLISH CHURCH HISTORY & HYMN TOUR, July 2-12, 2016: ITINERARY

DAY 1 (July 2): Tour begins at London Heathrow where we will gather, get acquainted, and meet our coach and driver; coach to Farnham (:30 from Heathrow) where Augustus Toplady was born; stroll the village; see Farnham castle and St. Andrew's Church; coach to Southampton (1:00) where Watts was born, brief stop at Watts Park Isaac Watts; William Walsham Howe; Vaughan Williams, others; coach to Winchester Cathedral, evensong; (1:30 from Farnham) stay in Winchester; Thomas Ken (John Donne, Jane Austen connections)

DAY  2 (July 3, Sunday): Sunday worship at Winchester Cathedral: Coach to Salisbury (:43 from Winchester); George Herbert at nearby Bemerton; Down Ampney, Vaughan Williams; coach to Bristol (1:30) Bristol Cathedral, Samuel Crossman, Anna Waring, Charles Wesley; Neath, Wales, Anna Waring; evensong at cathedral; hotel and dinner near Bristol (Bath or Chipping Sodbury (:30), Tyndale lived in Sodbury manor)

DAY 3 (July 4--2 nights): Coach to Oxford (1:30); Headington Quarry and Lewis’s home, Holy Trinity Church, his grave; Morning Star at Oxford episodes here too; Wycliffe’s Balliol College chapel; St. Mary the Virgin University Church (dinner at one of Lewis’s and the Inklings’ pubs in Oxford); hotel near Oxford

DAY 4 (July 5): Reformation Oxford, martyrs’ monument, Latimer, Ridley, Cranmer; other sites and free time to explore this most fascinating English university town; second night in hotel near Oxford

DAY 5 (July 6--2 nights): Coach to Lutterworth (1:30), visit St Mary’s Lutterworth where Wycliffe preached his last sermon, was buried in chancel, exhumed after Council of Constance, burned posthumously, his ashes scattered in the River Swift; (coach to Ossett for book shop signing and writing workshop, junction 40 off M1); coach to Durham (3:00), hotel and dinner  

DAY 6 (July 7):  Durham Cathedral, Venerable Bede (Hand of Vengeance), Bede A Hymn of Glory let us sing, Cuthbert and Celtic Christianity, Caedman’s Hymn; JB Lightfoot and JC Ryle connections; dinner in Durham hotel

DAY 7 (July 8--2 nights): Coach from Durham to York (1:30), Wycliffe born in Yorkshire; see walled city of York; York Minster Cathedral with more Medieval stained glass than all the churches in England combined; coach to hotel near Cambridge (St Neots or Peterborough) Cambridge various hymn writer connections and Reformation; hotel 2 nights in Cambridge, evening walking tour of Cambridge and dinner

DAY 8 (July 9): morning coach from Cambridge hotel to Olney (1:15); St. Peter's and St. Paul's parish church; Newton & Cowper Museum; walk along the River Great Ouse; Elstow (:30) and John Bunyan; afternoon, Cambridge Reformation sites; Hymn writers who attended Cambridge; stay 2nd night in Cambridge.

DAY 9 (July 10--2 nights): Morning worship at Cambridge Church. Coach to London (2:00, and goodbye to our coach driver); Bunhill Fields, Bunyan, Defoe, Watts, Owen, Susannah Wesley; Thomas Goodwin; Joseph Hart. Spurgeon Metropolitan Tabernacle; Westminster Abbey evensong; St Paul’s evensong option; hotel 2 nights in London

DAY 10 (July 11): Tower of London in morning; free time options in London, a vast and fascinating city; you will have an underground pass and tutorial on how to use it (super fun way to get around this city), and suggestions for what to see on your time; last night in hotel in London, dinner reprising the whole

DAY 11 (July 12): Breakfast together at hotel; final farewells and off to Heathrow and home with a lifetime of memories to contemplate and apply.

REGISTER TODAY! Receive a free hardback copy of THE POETIC WONDER OF ISSAC WATTS, Reformation Trust (Ligonier)

Because we anticipate a fully subscribed tour, we invite you to reserve your place today.

--Ground cost per adult: $2,850* {Register before January 1 and receive a $100 discount AND a free copy of my Watts biography)
--Questions?

Email: bondbooks.net@gmail.com or call 253.381.1961 - Join this website today
--Read and sign TRAVEL CONTRACT and send in your $100 deposit per traveler today.

Register today! Email: bondbooks.net@gmail.com or call 253.381.1961 

"It was a 5-star tour at a 2-star price," said a recent traveler.

"The fellowship on Bond tours is amazing. Each day was like a foretaste of heaven."

Contact me about family discounts (we do everything we are able to make Bond tours accessible to families)

Payment Schedule Register while space is available and we will customize a three-stage payment plan for your family:

{For early birds) September 1, 2015--$900

February 1, 2016--$1000

May 1, 2016--Balance due in full (We still have a few places available, but the tour will close soon)

Highlights from the last Mr Pipes Hymn Tour, England & Wales

BLOG HIGHLIGHTS from the last HYMN TOUR of England & Wales

AUDIO HIGHLIGHTS:

Toplady and Broadhembury

Me falling off an altar rail while talking Toplady

Bristol Cathedral evensong, part 1 and part 2

Winchester Cathedral evensong, part 1 and part 2

 

 

 

 

Previous Travelers with Bond have said...

"The tour far and away exceeded all our expectations," (Calvin 500, 2009 Tour).

"Words really fail me here - if only I had Mr. Bond's talents!  I am so incredibly blessed. Your enthusiasm for history and literature are contagious." (UK and France Tour, 2010).

Since 1996, author Douglas Bond has guided 100s of students and families on never-to-be-forgotten adventures exploring Church history in Europe.

 

Other recent tour participants said this about their experience: 

"It was such an incredible gift and challenge to me to see how Christ-centered you are..."

"The tour really was way more than we ever expected or imagined..."

"When is the next tour? We're on it!" (Crown & Covenant Trilogy Tour, Scotland, 2011)

FAQ: What to do if I want to reserve my place on this tour? 

HYMN WRITERS & THEIR HYMNS

Below find a number of the hymn writers and their hymns that are featured on the ENGLAND CHURCH HISTORY AND HYMN TOUR, 2016.

You will want to download and print Hymns and hymn writers 

You can look up hymns by first line and listen to their tune at http://www.blueletterbible.org/hymns/ 

Great UK choirs singing Watts

HOW TO PACK and other travel details

PASSPORT     

Be sure you have your passport with you when you leave for the airport, and plan to keep it with you at all times when traveling abroad. Families will want to make photocopies of each family member’s passport and tuck these away in Mom or Dad’s suitcase. If there is a lost or stolen passport on the tour, it will be easier to replace with a photocopy than without (it won’t be easy, just easier).

MONEY

At the moment, there are approximately 1.58 USD to 1 GBP.   

All lodging, entry fees for group activities (you may choose to enter castles, museums, and other locations on free time at your own expense), coach transportation, and breakfast, and lunch or dinner are covered in the trip fee (22 meals total).

You will need to notify your bank to exchange USD into GBP Banks are now charging fees for providing foreign currency so it is a good idea to find out what those fees are before you make the exchange.

ATM cards are the easiest way to get cash in the UK (there are lots of cash machines). Check with your bank to see what fees will be charged to your account for these cash withdrawals. We use a Capital One Master Card for foreign purchases because it is one of few cards that does not charge foreign exchange transaction fees. Check with your bank for the best option for your banking needs abroad.

If you are using a credit card or debit card make sure that you notify your bank ahead so they do not put a hold on your card due to unusual purchases.

Plan to use a money belt for credit cards, passport, and cash. I prefer the kind that goes around my neck, though I sometimes use both. It is a good idea to spread out where you keep valuables on your person, and families will want to keep duplicate credit cards and cash distributed between husband and wife.

KEEPING IN TOUCH

Phone cards – if you purchase an international phone card in the USA make sure that you have all the access code information with you to use it on the tour. Most hotel phones will accept phone cards purchased in the U.K. I recommend purchasing phone cards when you get in the UK.

Cell Phones - Check with your cell phone provider. Depending on your service package, you may be able to upgrade your cell service for a short time so your own phone with your own number can be used as an international cell phone. Otherwise, you may purchase an international cell phone when we arrive in the UK. Cheryl and I will each have an international cell phone. 

Email: If you wish to access and send email on the tour make sure you know your password and use an easily accessible account such as hotmail or gmail.

PACKING

  • Comfortable, sturdy walking shoes are one of the most important items you need to bring on the trip. Brits do lots more walking than most Americans, so bring your most comfortable pair of shoes. If you purchase a new pair, start wearing them in right away. It's not a bad idea to bring a second pair of shoes or slippers for resting your feet in the evenings. 
  • Bring a small shoulder bag or day-pack and one small to medium size suitcase or backpack. The lighter you travel, the more enjoyable the travel (in my opinion).
  • I carry a shoulder bag and carry on the plane with me a wheeled suitcase that does not exceed the maximum size for carry-on luggage. Most airlines will include one checked bag in your flight cost but will charge extra for a second checked bag. Families may want to consolidate kid’s luggage in fewer suitcases. That’s up to you to decide. I just prefer keeping my luggage with me, that way if I do bring items home, I can check one bag on the return.
  • Keep the essentials in the day-pack and carry it on the plane. Carry-on bag must have a combined linear measurement (L +W+H) of 45 inches or less and weigh under 40 pounds. Bring your passport! Do not pack your passport into the suitcase you plan to check in as baggage. Keep it on your person or in your carry-on bag. You will need it to board the plane. The essentials include such items as a toothbrush, toothpaste, medications, aspirin, motion sickness pills, tissues, comb, a change of socks and underwear, and camera. Be sure to follow airline regulations regarding liquids in your carry on bag. A small poncho is recommended. In the day-pack should also be a sweater, Bible, and at least one good book. You may want a compact telescoping umbrella.
  • Everything else you bring should be in your small to medium sized suitcase or backpack. Checked baggage must be under 50 pounds. The biggest problem new travelers have is packing too much. You will not need much for this trip. Wear loose comfortable shoes for the plane. Pack good worn-in walking shoes. Two pairs of pants, two shirts, a fleece, a sweater, a rain-resistant coat, 3 changes of underclothes and socks.  Plan to wash clothes in the sink in your hotel every couple of days. Most hotels will have a place for drying cloths. After these essentials are packed, see how much room is left, then fill the extra space with something appropriate for church and dining. If you plan to bring home gifts from your trip, bring along an empty duffle bag, which you can pack with souvenirs for your return trip, but remember that you will have to pay for an extra bag on your return flight to the US. Clearly label your day-pack and suitcase with your name and phone number. Mark your suitcase with distinctive tape for easy recognition at baggage claim.
  • My wife will be mortified at me telling you this, but it works so well, here goes. I keep a collection of socks and other undergarments that are feeling their age (wearing thin, on their last legs, or threads), including dress shirts in their final moments of respectable life; I then wear and pack these for the first few days of the trip, jettisoning them shamelessly in the UK rubbish bins, thereby filling their landfills with my has-been clothes. This I find to be an intensely satisfying way to be rid of my tired clothing items, and to reduce the need to wash things out early in the trip. If I run completely out (it happens), I simply purchase new things. They do have stores that sell such items in Britain.

CHECKLIST

Write yourself a short checklist before you leave for the airport. Don't forget passport, reading material, tour journal notebook, Bible, and an adapter plug if you need it.

ELECTRICITY

The U.S. operates on 110 volts while Europe uses 220 volts.  To operate an electric hair dryer or razor – it must be able to adjust to 220 volts and you will need a plug adapter that is configured for British electrical outlets which are more like dryer or stove outlets than ours. For laptops and camera battery rechargers, check with your manufacturer to see if these need power converters for UK voltage. My laptop (HP PC) does not, but all our electrical plug-ins need the UK outlet adapter to configure to their outlets.

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HISTORY Where it Happened

Reformation Wall, Geneva

Edinburgh, Scotland

Lutherhaus, Wittenberg

Norham Castle, Scotland

Calvin's Noyon, France


Heidelberg Castle, Germany


Durham, England

Leuchars, Scotland


Strasbourg, France

Loudoun Hill, Scotland

Loudoun Keep, Scotland


Learn more about Bond's books

Ayrshire, Scotland

Mr Pipes Hymn Tours