Post 13/10/2016: Breaking News….
About 18 months ago I decided to walk part of the Camino, also known as ‘The Way of Saint James’, starting on 28th September 2016 from a town called Lugo in Northern Spain and finishing at the Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela on 2nd October, covering a distance of approximately 105kms in five days.
The walk took me through the lovely Galician countryside, following the signposts marked with the symbol of the Camino, the scallop shell. The distances varied each day and, a couple of long walks in (the longest being 10 hours) I felt very glad to have followed my training schedule! Blisters were unavoidable, but, double layers of Compeed plasters were a great help!
I met a Priest from Argentina along the way. His name is Leonardo Paluzzi and he had walked from Jean Pied de Port in France. He was walking to Santiago and was due to assist with the taking of the Pilgrim’s Mass on the Sunday. He told me that this is a particularly holy year in the Catholic Church and that, during this year, the ‘Door of Mercy’ is opened in the Cathedral. Pilgrims are allowed to walk through this door and pray for a Plenary Indulgence. This means that you can pray for the soul of someone who has passed away.
This meant a great deal to me since my mother passed away in May 2015 after a long battle with Alzheimer’s. I know only too well the heartbreak this awful disease brings, not just to the sufferer, but also to the family and loved ones trying to cope with the demands of day to day life whilst, at the same time, watching their loved one steadily decline. I decided to try to raise some money for the Alzheimer’s Society by walking the Camino.
I met some lovely people along the way. There is a great deal of camaraderie amongst the pilgrims. As with many challenges, it brings out the best in human nature and is an example of man’s desire to strive and achieve. The Camino is treated with respect by those participating and by the Spanish inhabitants who were always kind and helpful.
Arriving in Santiago, I felt a mixture of emotions. I felt elated to have completed the walk and very happy to meet my eldest son, Alex, outside the Cathedral. At the same time I was very sad that it had come to an end and just wished I could keep walking!
I have been bowled over by the support I have received from family and friends. With your generosity I have managed to raise approximately £1,500.00 towards the Alzheimer’s Society. I cannot thank you enough. It was a wonderful experience for me and I recommend anyone who is able to try it!
A welcome meeting at the finish outside the Santiago Cathedral.
L2R: Alex (my Son), Myself and Amanda (his American girlfriend).
…more pictures coming soon.
Parishioner Wanda Prain will be walking part of the Camino trail in Spain to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society in memory of her late mother. Wanda will walk 100kms in 5 days, finishing at the Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela on 2nd October.
To support Wanda and Read the full story, please click here.
Alternatively, there are sponsorship forms at the back of the churches.