Today I found a gem on the el Camino route. Or at least I hope so.
“Pilgrim House is a faith based non-profit in Santiago de Compostela for the sole purpose of serving pilgrims. The Welcome Center was borne out of a desire to offer a place for the wandering heart and searching soul.”
When I walked for two weeks in October 2016, I didnt experience any albergues (hostals) where Jesus Christ was the Head. Meaning where people sat down together and sang or shared the Word or were in prayers worshiping the Lord.
In the year 2017 a pilgrimage is for many people, if not the most, something of a private “spiritual” (a new age inner journey) or pleasure.
My experience is also that the catholics are more restricted than charismatic evangelists (protestants).
Its offensive to talk about God and Jesus today, even for so called christians.
Well in Granon there were some catholic volunteers (hospitaleros) where they sang one hymn, and then we all said “the Lords prayer”.
That albergues is called Albergue parroquial San Juan Bautista and they are located in the bell tower of the church. Its a place where many pilgrims look back with remembrance because of its cosy atmosphere.
Besides, it all depends on who is the volunteer or hospitalero when you arrive at your albergue. And of course what the orientation (religious or non religious) is for that particular place.
All of you christians who know how to play an instrument and sing – watch the video and hopefully you will be inspired. Maybe you should just grab your guitar and work as hospitalero for two weeks. The el Camino is a Spritual Walk and there are many empty or lost souls out there. They are thirsty and they are hungry. Out duty is to feed them. Through speech, prayer, singing/music and reading/sharing the Word.
“- Feed my sheep”, Jesus said to Petrus.
Back to the Pilgrim House Social Center, located in Santiago de Compostela which is at the end destination of el Camino. This is what they write;
It is a simple fact that one’s life and soul require attention, attention that is oftentimes lacking, and because of this, the Camino frequently happens to be so much more than a simple walk through Spain.
The extended time away from routines and distractions allows the “stuff” of life to finally get our attention.
And all of this “stuff” necessitates time and space to sort out. It is exactly this “time and space” that we offer.
The Welcome Center is not only a place for weary pilgrims to find respite from their travels, but more importantly, a place to find the space needed to sit with whatever is stirring in their hearts.
Though our focus is on the personal internal journey of the Camino, we offer a number of services to help make your transition back home easier and less distracting.
As communal space to visit and catch up with fellow pilgrims, a quiet space for meditation, reading, journaling, praying and scheduled meditation services.
We believe at the heart of our own journeys and pilgrimages is the love of the Creator.
He is the originator and essence of rich living and deeper connection. It is through the mystery of Jesus Christ that we are continually finding that life is more; that it is deeper and wider and higher than we have imagined.
We know that there is redemption, we know there is hope and we know there is renewal.
We also know that it’s not found in ideas, philosophies, or theologies. It is only found in an actual personal relationship with the Creator. Yeah, we know the craziness of it all, but we also know the reality of it.
However, we are not here to convince you that we are right or that you need to see things our way. All pilgrims are welcome in Pilgrim House, we’re here to offer a helping hand and a listening ear along The Way.
I look forward to my destination Jerusalem, but before that, there is another last destination city and a resting place I like to visit.
UPDATE: Faith who is the woman managing the Pilgrim House, gave me this tip of a private albergue (hostal) in Villamayor de Monjardin (between the cities of Pamplona and Logroño): Oasis Trail
“To bring reli-travelers in touch with Jesus Messiah through establishing hospitable centers along pilgrims’ trails or at pilgrims’ sites, where passing pilgrims are warmly welcomed and where their physical and spirit needs are cared for.”
Watch: Oasis Trail introduction
So glad I found it x 2!