lørdag den 6. august 2016

De to forskellige Compostella

Nok en gang en forklaring på, hvem, der får Compostella, og hvilke af de to, pilgrimmen får, når han/hun ankommer til Santiago.
Der findes to forskellige Compostella, som pilgrimmen kan få, når de kommer til Santiago. Det traditionelle Compostella, der går jakobsvejen, Camino de Santiago, af religiøse grunde, og et Velkomst Certifikat, som gives til dem, der går af sportslige, kulturelle eller en anden ikke religiøs begrundelse. Kravene til begge Compostella'er er de samme. Du skal have et pilgrimspas, Credential, som er stemplet to gange daglig på de sidste 100 km. Hvis du går på Camino Frances, er det en god ide at have to daglige stempler fra Sarria, der ligger ca 116 km fra Santiago. Er du på cykel er kravet ikke 100 km, men det dobbelte, 200 km. Der har i visse pilgrimskredse været et ønske om, at kravet om kilometer blev hævet til 300 for gående, men det har indtil nu været afvist af den katolske kirke, det vil her sige Katedralen i Santiago.
Den engelsksprogede Nicole, der pt. er frivillig på pilgrimskontoret i Santiago, har jeg tidligere citeret her på siden. Hun giver her på engelsk en meget omfattende forklaring på Compostella, og hvem der får det, samt hvorfor du bliver bedt om at udfylde et dokument ved ankomsten til Santiago, når du henvender dig på pilgrimskontoret for at få et Compostella eller Velkomst Certifikat.
Her kan du læse Nicoles forklaring, som også omtaler en episode, hvor hun har været med til at nægte udleveringen af et Compostella. bertningen er på engelsk:

I'm a volunteer in the Pilgrim's office and I'm one of the people who looks at your credential, asks you your motivation (which you fill in on a form along with other data like gender, age, nationality and where you started from) and writes up the appropriate certificate.

If you want to stay in pilgrim albergues you need to show your credencial. This is proof that you are a pilgrim. You can also use the credencial for discounted entry at some museums along the various routes. If you want to get either a Compostela or a Welcome Certificate you need to show your credencial AND you need at least two stamps per day for the last 100km of a recognised route if you are on foot, horse or wheelchair and 200km if you are on a bike. You can have started in Warsaw or Le Puy but what we look at for issuing the above mentioned documents (which are free) are the sellos. These have to be dated and they need to be in a logical sequence (i.e. in the order you would have acquired them if you walked or cycled). The sellos do not have to be from churches or albergues. They can be from bars, restaurants, bakeries, police stations, petrol stations, i.e. any place that has a stamp. Last year, when I volunteered, the person next to me had a man come in with a sello from Sarria (dated), a sello from Melide (over 60km away from Sarria and dated the following day) and he was in the Oficina on day 3 asking for a Compostela. He claimed to have covered 116km on foot in three days. When asked about the lack of sellos, he said that there were no places that issues them apart from Melide. Anyone who has walked this know that this is impossible. At my desk, there was a peregrina who started in Sarria. It took her 5 days and her credencial was full of sellos. She showed him her credencial. Other peregrinos from Sarria also showed theirs. We refused a Compostela (or a Welcome Certificate) to this person as it was clear that he must have taken the bus or a car. We turned down someone today who had s credencial, but he had sellos from all over the place: Lugo, Sarria, Melide, between Finisterre and Muxia...In short, there is no way this person could have liked all this up by foot because they are from different routes. Clearly this was another case of someone using a car who thought that we wouldn't notice. We are strict about this because it is unfair to give a Compostela or a Welcome Certificate to someone who hasn't done the route on foot. The rules for getting a Compostela or Welcome Certificate are clearly stated on the Oficina website, in most guidebooks and in most of the credenciales. The Spanish and 'official' credenciales from country associations have the correct rubric about what qualifies you for the above mentioned certificate.

We don't look at what box you may or may not have ticked on your credencial when you started your route. Some credenciales don't have a box at all. The old French ones did. We ask you at the desk what your motivation is and ask you to tick a box. Most people have multiple motivations. In this case, I show them both documents, explain what they mean and say you have to choose one. I must admit that the wording on the form and the wording on the Oficina website don't quite match up, but it is easy enough to figure out. According to the stats, in June 2016, 43% of people said that their motivation was religious. This is the first box on the form. I've had a Buddhist monk tick this box, so you don't have to be Catholic to have a religious reason for pilgrimage. 50% said that their motivation was religious/cultural. The wording on the form says 'religioso o otro'. This is the second box. I explain that this means religious or spiritual reasons. Some people do the Camino in order to discover themselves. Some do it as a promise to some one (a dead or ill relative). We count this as 'spiritual' and this is the second box. People who tick box 1 or 2 get the Compostela. The third box on the form says 'no religioso'. In the stats, this is down as 'cultural' and in June 2016, 7% of pilgrims fell into this category. When I describe this category to people I explain that this is for people who are doing the Camino purely for touristic, cultural or sporting reasons. These people get the 'Welcome Certificate'. Both documents are beautiful and have coloured illustrations from the Codex Calixto (an early document on the pilgrimage to Santiago). Both are written in Latin and we translate your first and middle name into Latin when we fill out these documents. We welcome all pilgrims equally regardless of their stated motivation upon arrival as long as they get the required sellos.

The Oficina del Peregrino falls under the wing of the Cathedral and I think that they would like to think that people are doing pilgrimage for 'religious or spiritual' reasons. However, the reality is that not everyone doing this pilgrimage is Catholic nor do they have religious or spiritual motives for doing this. It should be noted that in 1987, the Camino de Santiago was declared a European Cultural Itinerary (the first in Europe to be so designated). In 2015, the Camino del Norte was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Whatever the wording of the Credencial issued by the Cathedral in Santiago, the cultural nature of the Camino cannot be ignored. I don't know if this is the case but it wouldn't surprise me if this is why the stats have the word 'cultural' added to it.

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