Reflections on the Camino

I find it hard to believe that it has been two months since a group of seventeen pilgrims met in Oia, Spain to begin a pilgrimage along part of the Portuguese Way of the Camino de Santiago. This weeklong walk changed us all in ways that we’re still processing. I wish to share my experience of what it means to walk the Camino.

On day two of the pilgrimage, we left our wonderful Parador in Baiona and walked seventeen miles to Vigo. Mind you, the most I had walked to prepare for the Camino was eight-and-a-half miles so I knew that walking seventeen was going to be a challenge. I did complete that long walk, but by the time I arrived in Vigo every fiber of my being was exhausted. I was so tired that as I got close to the hotel in Vigo I noticed my shoelaces were untied but I could not bend over to tie them.

At dinner that evening I was convinced that I was going to rest the next day and take a taxi or train to our next stop. However, the next morning, even though I was still hurting, something in me would not let me not walk. I took a couple of Tylenol, stretched, and walked the twelve miles to Redondela.

The entire week as we walked, we were moved by the beauty of God’s creation. This was so true on the way to Redondela. After walking out of the morning hustle and bustle of Vigo we entered the silence of nature on our way to our destination. It was along this level path that I felt the power of the Camino. I was tired from the day before, but I also felt exhilarated. Something was leading me and I can only describe it as energy or a vibrational pull that was moving me forward. I believe it was the Holy Spirit guiding me and I began to cry. It was at this time that I began to let go of years of regret and I became lighter in my spirit and soul. The Camino will do that to a person as it allows a pilgrim to go inside and to be still and be opened to the holy presence of God.

Two months later I still feel the lightest I have ever been, and I cry every time I think about our experience in July. I want to walk as a pilgrim in these lands again real soon. I also know that pilgrimage is an ongoing, internal experience – we walk our own Camino every day as we desire and yearn to be transformed and set free and live in the oneness of the divine.  

Buen Camino!

Shalem’s On the Camino: A Pilgrimage to Remember, Release, and Reimagine will be July 17 – 26, 2023. We still have four spots available. Learn more and apply now.

September 09, 2022 by David Andrews 1 Comment
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Wendy
Wendy
2 months ago

Such a sacred moment you experienced with the Holy Spirit. It is an inner knowing that transcends words. Blessings!

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