The real miracle of the Camino is the journey itself… ‘home is the journey’ as many have said’
If you are finding the sofa a little hard to bear at the moment, take a moment to escape with Richard Frazer who made the pilgrim’s journey to Santiago de Compostela. This is how it starts…
‘I hobbled into La Ferme du Barry, a pilgrim refuge in Aumont-Aubrac in the Cévennes region of France, a defeated man. Only three days into my pilgrimage from Le Puy-en-Velay to Santiago de Compostela, I was broken and utterly dejected.
My knees were shot by the constant up and down of the hilly terrain, I had the worst dose of tendonitis I have ever know in my left ankle, and blisters covered the soles of both my feet. I felt totally crippled and doubted I could go on. I had arrived from Edinburgh only days before, and now felt I needed to get back n the train and head home with my tail between my legs, a humiliated man who’d completely misjudged his ability. I was rehearsing in my mind what i might say to all the people who’d supported me in this venture, how i’d tell them that it was all a big mistake and beyond me.’
And this how it ends…
‘If the Camino has taught me anything, it has reinforced my commitment to working to build communities of trust and friendship which are free of prejudice and the abuse of power, where people seek out the essential goodness and grace that is at the heart of all. To allow ourselves to be vulnerable and to be helped by strangers can be hard, and goes against the grain of self-reliance. But if we ask for help when things go wrong, if we accept that we all have times of vulnerability, far from being diminished, we will discover the richness of a caring community that grows through kindness. We must recognise that we are not fully our own, and that whatever the mystery that the church is, the best of it is not the fallible, human institution it has so often become but a mysterious initiative we do not control which will surprise us and often take our breath away. We should anticipate gifts, rather than thinking we only have gifts to give, and realise that there is inexhaustible goodness and inspiration out there waiting to lift us up. We must overcome gender stereotypes and find that gender justice is a means of peace-making in our own homes and communities.
All this I have learned, discovered and experienced between Le Puy-en-Velay and Santiago de Compostela.’
– Richard Frazer, Travels with a Stick
Read the journey in the Ebook or printed book.
Looking for something a little closer to home? The Fife Pilgrim Way by Ian Bradley.