Here is today’s update from our pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela in Spain!
I can’t wait until you guys see the video we’re going to put together for this pilgrimage! Stay tuned!
Melide – Arzúa (9 miles)
Today was a beautiful day. The rain held off until about an hour before reaching Arzúa. The paths are so muddy that at times we have to walk single file to avoid getting stuck in the mud! Gorgeous landscapes and lush valleys greeted us along the way.
In his morning sermon, Fr. Graves said that many do not understand why pilgrims walk the Way of St. James. The world is horrified and scandalized by the Cross. The world does not understand its meaning, and it avoids suffering as much as possible. It does not see the cross as the means to heaven. So in order to carry our cross, we must look to Our Lord on His Cross. Otherwise, the cross has no meaning; why suffer if there is nothing to be obtained? We must make reparation for our sins with our sacrifices, with our acts of penance, always thinking of Our Lord on the Cross.
Father also reminded us that we can obtain a plenary indulgence by walking the Way of St. James, and listed the conditions to gain a plenary indulgence, as long as one is in the state of grace:
– have the interior disposition of complete detachment from sin, even venial sin;
– have sacramentally confessed one’s sins;
– receive Holy Communion;
– pray for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff.
We also learned a little bit about Melide before leaving it. Since its foundation in the 10th century, Melide has been linked with the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela. It is the only town where two Camino routes meet: the Camino Primitivo (Original Way) stops in Melide and the Camino Frances (French Way) passes through Melide. Due to the two routes meeting in this town, it is well equipped and accustomed to helping pilgrims. From Melide these two routes become one to Santiago de Compostela. The 11th-century “cruceiro” – stone cross at the start of The Way in Melide – is thought to be the oldest in Galicia.
Today’s walk was similar to yesterday’s in the sense that it was less walking and less steep slopes than the first two days. A very beautiful valley along the way was the one formed by the Iso river in Ribadiso, a tiny and idyllic hamlet featuring a medieval bridge.
The beautiful group photos taken today reflect the energetic and charitable spirit of our pilgrims. Everyone is having a wonderful pilgrimage and is looking forward to the final two days of our walk! Thank you for all your prayers; we keep you in ours.