October 10, 2022

“Be glad to take care of strangers in your house.” Romans 12:13 WYC

We met a woman Saturday evening from South Africa. Her story was an amazing one of attentiveness and trust. It’s a longer story to be shared at another time.

Here’s the one part that brought tears to my eyes. She had managed to reserve overnight accommodations until one leg of the Camino She arrived at a small village around 7:30 in the evening. It was almost sunset and she started checking guest houses. No one had room for her.

She’d walked past an elderly man sipping a drink outside his house several times in her search. He called to her “you must spend the night at my house”

She walked toward him as he called for one of his granddaughters to prepare a room for her. His wife set an extra place at the dinner table. She was embraced as family at the table, had a wonderful night’s sleep in a simple and simply lovely upstairs bedroom.

The next morning at breakfast, the man invited her to stay for a week to learn survival Spanish. She declined, but promised to come back. I believe she will.

The pilgrimage reinforces hospitality to strangers, as we pass people who call out “hola” (hello) and “buen Camino” (good way), people we have brief conversations with while walking or getting a cup of coffee, people who welcome us into tiny churches to get our Camino Passports stamped and offer a blessing.

I pray that similar kind deeds are happening in Florida and Ukraine and Woodstock, VA.

I am sure they are. It is the way of the heart. ~ Anne

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