The Three Days
The Spirit Walk ritual spans three days from arrival to departure.
Day one: We suggest you arrive by 5pm of day one, when you will begin your 24 hour fast. Here are instructions for how to find us in our remote location. You will be given a tour of the the Congregation House. If you prefer not to camp the first night, you will be assigned a bed in a semi-private or private room and shown the bathroom and kitchen. Depending on your arrival time, you will be given a tour of the Spirit Walk campsites upon arrival or on day two.
Day two: If you have not yet been given a tour of the campsite areas, a tour will be provided in the morning. The fast day is to be taken on Church land, during which time you may wish to pray, meditate, read, snooze and, very importantly, drink lots of water. You will be administered the Sacramental Tea by 5pm on this day by a Clergy Member who will provide brief instructions on how to drink the tea. After this, you will go to your Spirit Walk campsite, where you are encouraged to camp out for the duration of your experience.
Day three: Rest and/or departure day. Many individuals are ready to depart from the church the morning after the Spirit Walk, and we encourage this so we may prepare for another Spirit Walker. You can plan to stay at a motel near your airport or visit our local hot springs. Some ideas: Essence of Tranquility, Roper Lake State Park, and Aravaipa Canyon.
The Spirit Walk communicant must fast for 24 hours on Church land prior to receipt of the Holy Sacrament. The function of the fast is to allow the communicant’s body to rest and shed the pressures of conventional lifestyles. During this purification period the communicant may enjoy the quiet grace of Mother Nature on the 160 acres of Sacred Church land. Hike around a little or rest, read and hydrate with pure water or organic herbal teas that are available in the kitchen of the Congregation House.
The diet we recommend in the Word of Wisdom is a lifetime dietary recommendation, promising long life, health and strength. The Word of Wisdom, Section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants of the Mormon Church, forms the basis of the dietary principles of the Peyote Way Church of God in the disciplined and joyful pursuit of a sound and beneficial lifestyle. We prioritize the consumption of local, organic and seasonal produce, a diverse range of grains, plant-based proteins, and sparing consumption of eggs and fish. We eschew the consumption of alcohol and non-ceremonial tobacco. At least for a few days prior to your Spirit Walk, we warmly encourage Church members to practice these dietary principles so that your body is clear and ready to receive the Peyote.
What To Bring
Enough water for the 12-hour experience (at least 1-2 liters) should be taken to your campsite, as well as spiritual reading material, a pad and pen (or art supplies–for recording one’s thoughts, insights, plans, needs, desires and resolutions or inspired sketching).
Due to shifting dynamics in international recycling markets, our ability to recycle has recently been curtailed. For this reason, and in respect of our limited trash receiving capabilities, we ask all visitors to please practice the “pack it in, pack it out” principle. Please take your trash with you whenever possible, especially large bulk items such as beverage containers, boxes and other forms of packaging, and if possible, recycle or reuse your waste.
What the Church Provides
Each campsite is prepared for the communicant by a Church-resident steward who builds a fire, sets out camping materials and tidies the area before and after the Spirit Walk. Communicants will be provided with two sleeping bags, a flashlight, lantern, lighter or matches, a chair, and a sleeping pad at a campsite covered by a canopy with carpets laid upon the ground. It is recommended to wear clothes that can be layered to accommodate daily weather changes in the Aravaipa Valley, which can vary by up to fifty degrees within a day. The Church also makes available for use jackets and hats. Depending on weather conditions and after obtaining the Church steward’s permission, a small double-ring fire will be prepared by Church resident stewards while setting up the campsite, which may be lit by the communicant.
The Sacramental Tea
The Holy Sacrament Peyote is taken as a tea, ingested slowly, giving the stomach a chance to adjust to its nauseating effect. Once the nausea is overcome, another sip of tea may be taken, until all the sacrament has been consumed. The Communicant must not be in a hurry for results. The Holy Sacrament comes on slowly and wears off gradually. Relax and enjoy the peaceful Aravaipa outback. Penitence, forgiveness of self and others, renewed confidence, desire for self improvement and improved health and a healthy attitude are all benefits of partaking of the Holy Sacrament Peyote.
Breaking the Fast
After the Spirit Walk, organic pinto beans will be made available to communicants in the Congregation House to break the fast, along with a small pantry of canned soups. Please keep in mind we are located in a remote location so food you may wish to consume when you break your fast should be brought with you – a refrigerator is available to store perishables. A popular food for breaking the fast is a grapefruit. We ask that you respect Church regulations and refrain from bringing any meat, alcohol, tobacco, coffee, any drugs or firearms on Church land.