Posts Tagged ‘lourdes’

How Do You Eat An Elephant?

Saturday, September 24th, 2016

Heathrow to Cantebury, a two day stroll to Dover followed by a ferry to Calais and a train to Lourdes and more travel to Bayonne then St Jean pied port. Over the Pyrenees with several hundred eager pilgrims, sporting headlamps at dawn and forgoing all rest stops to race to find a bed and moving on if they were full.

This had become stresssssssful and not the sacred pilgrimage we had planned on so we saw that there were many accredited ways to arrive at Santiago; via Madrid, Portugal, Barcelona, and from the north-the Camino Ingles. Our research showed us this was the true way the British, Irish, or Scots would have made their way to Santiago several hundred years ago,so we jumped ship and headed to the city of Ferrol on waters edge and dipped our poles in the water and went the way less traveled.

It is fewer days than the busy Camino Frances and lovely and with fewer travelers thus more friendships were made. It was the meditative peace we had envisioned. The terrain was for mountain goats and the long 9-17 mile daily hikes were usually rewarded with a shower, a bottle of wine, and a bunk.

So we have arrived at our destination a wee bit early but we paid our dues with the 300+ miles and we got it done.

One Bite at a Time!

more than 400 kms later

more than 400 kms later


Monday, August 29th, 2016

The enormity of Lourdes is still with me several days later. It was magnificent, humble, serene, and frightening all at the same time.

Thousands of people were there from many countries and multitudes were there hoping for a miracle in the healing waters. The quantity of volunteers pushing blue wheels chairs of the seriously ill up to the front mercy gate from the property’s hospital to receive the sign of the cross from bowls of holy water was staggering! So many sick people! So much hope.

You can google Lourdes if you don’t know the story or watch the movie “Song of Bernadette”. But 69 verified healings have happened since 1858 (that are known). Personally my faith is in Jesus Christ as Lord and healer, not in a miraculous spring of water, but what desperation would bring me here? Maybe not for myself, but for my child?

Crowds were lined up filling every kind of potable container possible. People were singing, praying, watching, taking lots of photographs, touching, and holding each other. The multiple sanctuaries were beautiful and worshipful, the acres of parkland so restorative.

I came as a pilgrim not a tourist. Lourdes made me cry.