The Journey

by Rev. Kerry Smith

As we walked towards our destination, I felt exhaustion, joy, relief, and a little sadness that the journey was over. The best part of my pilgrimage was the journey.

We had been walking the Portuguese Camino and a few days before arriving at the Cathedral in Santiago we had a holy moment when a Catholic lay priest blessed us and prayed. He began his prayer saying, “Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.” I remembered his words of thanks as I walked into the plaza and looked at the Cathedral.  I remembered his words of thanks as I looked at my 78 year-old mom who I had been blessed to walk the last 91 miles with. I remembered his words of thanks as I attended the Pilgrim’s Mass in Spanish and I recognized the scripture that was read (it was the same one that we heard at White Rock UMC because it was the lectionary reading for that Sunday). I remembered his words of thanks as we shared the passing of the peace together in a Cathedral full of people who were from all over the world.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.

The next day I went to the Cathedral early in the morning and heard singing.  I followed a group of teens who had finished walking the French camino. They were walking with a man who was playing the guitar and leading them in singing a song with three words, “Que linda, Hallelujah!” It means how beautiful, praise God. They sprinted as they came to the square with the Cathedral of Santiago. They kids all fell down laughing and crying. How beautiful, praise God.

As we passed people on the Camino de Santiago, we would say to one another, “Buen Camino,” which means good journey. My prayer for all of us is that we will all be blessed with a good journey as we grow more in love with God and more in love with one another.

1 Comment

Nancy Cole - May 12th, 2023 at 11:35am

What a beautiful experience you and your mother have had. I’m so happy for both of you.