Denver Botanical Gardens

Denver Botanical Gardens

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Days 23 and 24, To Rabanal and Acebo

Rabanal is truely one of our favorites. Less than 2 hours walk from Cruz de Fero, nestled in the hills above the great plains of Spain, and with prayers chanted in Latin every evening. The scripture for the service was Romans 8:1-2; There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus....Read in 4 languages so that everyone present could hear in their own tongue.

This blog is primarily a travel journal of our Camino, but the Cruz de Fero is a very spiritual place. Thousands of pilgrims have placed stones at the base of this cross, which represents the cross of Jesus. The scripture from the night before repeated in my head as we approached the cross. As is our tradition now, we stood nearby and sang the old hymn "When I Survey the Wondrous Cross". And while we ate a snack, I thought about the words of Paul, and what has become my core belief about God: If we want to know what God is like, we must look at Jesus. It is impossible for us to imagine what the Divine is like without contemplating the life of Jesus. He was Immanuel, God with us. Each time he encountered people who felt unloved, he loved them. He refused to retaliate toward the violence he suffered, to the point of pronouncing forgiveness on all mankind as some of his final words.

So we continue our Camino with the large numbers of folks from all over the world. The evening in Rabanal was great, and the decent into Acebo was steep and rocky.  Acebo is a 'city set on a hill', you might even say a mountain. Even though it is well below the top, the slopes still drop off quickly to the west.

The forecast is as unreliable here as it is anywhere. The rain continues. Temperatures in the 50s.
Quote from RA's journal: "Today the Camino Frances feels more like a pilgrimage, the Via de la Plata felt more like a hike."

This is an odd pilgrim sculpture
Castrillo de Polvazares is a very stony town
There must be a better English translation
Looking back at Rabanal
Spring comes late in the high country
One more kilometer on the asphalt to avoid the mud


  1. Following your journey. Today I had a great experience alone at the Cruz de Ferro. Moved on to the Albergue in Molinaseca. Very comfortable especially after the long steep descent

  2. I follow your writings with pleasere. We are now one etap before Ourense. We are now about 25 in this alberga. Sceneries in the mountins has been great. The weather yesterday was good, also today except a couple of short rain.
    I was moved what you wrote about the cross and that Jesus is the only way to know what God is ike.
    Buen camino and camino del vita

    Saara and Arto from Finland

  3. Great post -- both Mike's thoughts on the Cruz de Ferro and Ruth's journal quote. I reckon it's good to be back on familiar ground.

  4. Whew! Hopefully you are not only on a more familiar path but out of the mud. What a slog you have had but I have enjoyed reading your observations and am happy to read between the lines that your bodies and spirits are holding up despite the mud and water you are encountering. Your observations of God/Jesus are spot on Mike! Hugs to you both!