A brief description of the Camino
Following the discovery of the tomb of the Apostle James in Santiago de Compostela in the 9th century, the Pilgrims’ Route to Santiago became Medieval Europe’s principal pilgrimage trail. Countless numbers of pilgrims were moved by their faith to make the journey to Compostela from all over Europe, acting as the driving force for an artistic, social and economic evolution that has left its mark along the length of the Route. Yet the Pilgrims’ Route is much more than a vast archaeological site dependent on its past splendour. It is a living route that is renewed by the pilgrims, travellers and tourists of the 21st century that have the opportunity to discover at first hand an experience that forms part of the common heritage of all the peoples of Europe.
Following the Route to Santiago in the traditional way as a pilgrim, traveller or tourist, is not simply a case of taking a tour along an artistic trail in contact with nature. It is much more than this. It is an opportunity to learn about the religious and historic roots of Europe, a change to embark on an inner journey of discovery and transformation, moving in time with the rhythms and pace of centuries gone by. In short, it is an opportunity to become part of a pilgrimage.
It could be said that the Pilgrims’ Route to Santiago is a symbol. It is a route that represents faith, a route imbued with art and culture, an ecological and essentially human route, an encounter with the key issues in life, a search for the self, a pilgrimage to the mystery of death and rebirth. It is a physical and spiritual adventure.
Shirley Redman and her daughter Amy, a Grade 3 pupil at Oakhill, embarked on their Camino journey on 2nd May 2011. They walked for 6 weeks, covering anything between 20 and 30 kilometres a day. They returned home on 15th June 2011, after what proved to be a beautiful and amazing experience.