Today’s journey took us to our first destination, Arpino. After over 20 hours of travelling we were met with some of the most incredible scenery in the world. Arpino is situated about 130km east of Rome in the luscious country side of Italy.
Arpino is connected to our Holy Cross story. Tomorrow we will begin the Camino Benedetto. We will be embarking on 2 sections of the Way of St Benedict. Rosendo Salvado was a Benedictine who lived a life devoted to the rule of St Benedict. One of the key parts of this monastic life is a devotion to prayer. For us, the two days of Camino that we will be walking will be our way of praying with our feet.
It’s not going to be an easy pilgrimage. Both days are about 20km each of Italian countryside. Mountains and rough terrain, but like all pilgrimages we have a holy place as our destination. On Thursday we will be walking into the Abbey of Monte Cassino. This Abbey is the first Abbey that was established by the Benedictines. So in essence we will be walking in the footsteps of the foundation of the heritage of Rosendo Salvado. It is fair to say we are excited!
But like all pilgrimages – this will be hard. We know as Catholics that we are called to join with Christ in our sufferings. For Christ he understood the sufferings about to come in the Garden of Gethsemane and for Oscar Romero his Gethsemane moments were the constant thread of people calling for Romero to hide in his own residence – but God had bigger plans for him.
The challenge for us all in the Holy Cross community is to continue to be resilient in the face of adversity. St Paul reminds us in 2 Corinthians 12:9 that, ‘God’s grace is made perfect in our weakness’.
May we join in with Romero, who followed the footsteps of Our Lord in embracing the challenge with optimism.
Mr Ryan Shelton
Deputy of Faith