Feast of Saint James, Apostle

Today in Spain pilgrims from around the world arrive at the shrine of St. James to celebrate his great feast. Some of the pilgrims have no doubt made this journey many times before, but it occurs to me that to be a pilgrim in the truest sense, one can only make the route one time. A purist? Perhaps. Repeating the path, though, loses an essential element of what it means to be a pilgrim in the Christian sense. In the Christian pilgrimage thought life, we know that there is a goal, though we have not seen it before. We know there is a path that others have trod before us, but we do not know what awaits us along the way. There is a sense of controlled uncertainty in our pilgrimage. To have journeyed the path before, then, loses that unknown quality which is a necessary component of our lives. So my prayers go out to every soul marking the final leg of their path-but most especially they go out to those who arrive at their final goal with fresh eyes. May they find what their hearts have told them to seek.

July 25th, 2013