Friday, 17 June 2011

First Week at the Fuente del Peregrino

On June 5th the Fuente received its first host team who got everything rolling for the season:  the house, the beds, the coffee and the service to tend to the pilgrims on the Way of Saint James. Rex Winn was the team leader of this group which was made up of 3 Spaniards and 5 Americans that came to Spain for 10 days just to serve the pilgrims.

It was a week full of surprises and challenges. The first and most evident was upon arrival finding the "camino" under construction! For the last four months there has been a group of workers working on the "camino" that passes right through Ligonde, the village where the pilgrim house is located. During the week that the first team was in the house, the construction work continued. That very wek they had just asphalted the road that passes right by the pilgrim house. This meant that the pilgrims that wanted to come to the "Fuente" for coffee or use the bathrooms had to take a detour from the "camino," which the boss of the construction was nice enough to mark with signs.

In spite of the changes that the team had to make, the most interesting events as always are the personal stories, the people that they were able to assist. As in previous year, there were a lot of people that used the word "oasis" when they referred to the pilgrim house. Many others said that they felt an unexplainable peace when they passed through our doors. One can´t help but notice the love of God.When it is present you can feel it, you understand it, even without words.

A pilgrim from Málaga was sent on his way with tears in his eyes after two host team members tended to his one of his feet and wrapped it bandages. He said that he had never seen anything like that anywhere on the "camino."

Bego, a Basque pilgrim, also left deeply touched and crying after another host team member prayed for her, asking Jesus to show himself to her.

There were many stories, many people, seeds sown that we hope that will one day yield good fruit, fruit that will last.

We continue to be tremendously grateful to God for this place where we can continue receiving people, people that house in their hearts experiences, hopes, promises, expectations, questions, sadness and memories that move them and motivate them to pick up their backpack and start walking.

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