Jul 25, 2014

Fiesta de Santiago!

St. James the Apostle is commemorated on April 30 in the Orthodox Church, but western Christians celebrate his feast on July 25.  This is a huge feast in Spain -- if you hunt around, I'm sure you can find videos of the fireworks display at the cathedral in Santiago de Compostela.

Earlier this morning I finished watching a six part documentary called The Naked Pilgrim: The Road to Santiago.  The host, Brian Sewell, is a British art critic and a lapsed Catholic who had done the Camino forty years ago.  He never mentioned why he had done it when he was in his early thirties, but one of the goals of this journey was to speak with pilgrims and learn why they were walking to Santiago de Compostela. (It was moving to see how his own brusque agnosticism became less certain the longer he travelled.)

I don't remember when I first heard of the Camino, but I had filed it away as "Interesting, maybe later."  I had forgotten about it until one day in mid-November 2009, I read an article about it in The Walrus.  By the time I was done reading, I had decided I needed to do this.  Six weeks later, I was on my way.  If you have a few minutes, I encourage you to read Walking the Way.  If you don't have a few minutes, bookmark it and read it later.

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