June 16, 2010
In the footsteps of St James and his pilgrims in Pamplona
Ms. Carmen Jusué Simonena.
"May the values and high ideals that inspire the Way of St. James continue to guide the machinery of the construction of Europe", with these words and a fitting wish, the Prince of Asturias and Viana, Felipe de Borbón, proceeded on February 9, 2010 to the official opening of the Compostela Holy Year in Roncesvalles, accompanied by all the presidents of the Autonomous Communities through which the Pilgrims' Route to Santiago de Compostela passes. Thus, there is no doubt that the symbolism of the Way of St. James fits perfectly with the image of a vertebrate and cohesive Europe. In fact, the Jacobean route was the first common European project , the first business in which people from different communities came together, and all of them, coming from different origins, were united in a single path and destination.
The arrival of a new Jacobean Year arouses interest, even more if possible, on various aspects related to the figure of St. James, given that the history of pilgrimages to the tomb of the Apostle has been shaping, over the centuries, a very rich bequest along all the routes leading to it, which unequivocally express the devotion to the saint. In this context, the Way of St. James came to represent, from the confines of Italy, Germania or Scandinavia to the Galician Finisterre, the most spectacular sign of physical and spiritual concurrence of individuals and crowds. A path of devotion, but also a channel of goods, feelings, knowledge, convictions and dreams, the Jacobean pilgrimage route was undoubtedly the European road par excellence.
Pilgrims on the Magdalena Bridge on their arrival in Pamplona
And by the branch of the road that starts in the Pyrenees, Pamplona is accessed. If we had to condense in a single word what is new or essential in this core of the Camino, it would be, without a doubt, the CITY. In capital letters, because that is what it means and that summarizes its historical journey in the context of the Navarrese territory.
A tour of the fundamental milestones of the Camino as it passes through Pamplona; samples of different advocations in both religious and civil establishments, its extensive iconography spread throughout churches and convents of the city and a review of the welfare establishments in the city over the centuries, will give us to know the deep imprint that Santiago, his Camino and the pilgrims who go to his tomb, have left in Pamplona, the CITY.
Carmen Street. Old pilgrims street
Santiago caballero in the Pamplona Cathedral