The Camino de Santiago, also known as the Way of St. James, has been a Christian pilgrimage trail for more than 1,000 years. At the end of the journey in northwestern Spain is the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, where the remains of Saint James the Great, one of the apostles of Jesus Christ, reside.
During the 15th century, Pope Alexander VI declared that, along with Rome and Jerusalem, the Camino de Santiago would be officially recognized as one of the “three great pilgrimages of Christendom.”
The trip is a challenging one, as it is hundreds of miles long and crosses over some harsh terrain of mountains and deserts. Walkers along the route can also expect to experience the legendary Galician rains.
Despite this, the pilgrimage is more popular now than ever—more than 300,000 people from all over the world lace up their shoes or boots every year to make the trip. It can also be done by bicycle, although walking is best.
This lengthy journey isn’t along just one path or road, but rather a multitude of routes that all end at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. One of the more fascinating stories of the pilgrimage is the one told by Kristin Dickerson and her husband, Peter Fleisher, in the inspiriting documentary “Camino de Santiago: Faith Walk,” also known by its alternate title “Camino de Santiago—Faith Walk with Kristin and Peter” [available to watch on Epoch Cinema].
Some of the incredible scenic beauty that Kristin and Peter witnessed in “Camino de Santiago: Faith Walk” (Spirit & Nature Productions)
Along the way, there are two words that travelers will hear a lot: “Buen Camino!” we hear cyclists call out to Peter and Kristin as they pass by. These polite words in passing by Spaniards, who also travel along the route, essentially translate to “good way,” and are offered to encourage people who are making their pilgrimage, and also to wish them well.
This film has some excellent camera work, with candid shots of the film’s main subjects, their trials, and triumphs as they embark on their spiritual pilgrimage along the Camino de Santiago. There is also a lot of footage of the other-worldly beauty of both Spain and France, where they started their 500-mile walk.
In one of the more enchanting scenes, Peter and Kristin stop for the night at a bed and breakfast high up in the Pyrenees Mountains. They wake up in the morning to be greeted by incredible views of the verdant mountains and foothills and herds of animals being guided by their herders.
From L to R: New friend Laura, Kristin Dickerson, and Peter Fleisher in “Camino de Santiago: Faith Walk” (Spirit & Nature Productions)
Kristin hails from Las Cruces, New Mexico, and for over a decade, worked in broadcast journalism in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She met her husband-to-be Peter on a blind date, and after establishing a strong bond together, they never looked back.
Eventually, however, they felt they needed a change. So, they quit their jobs, liquidated their belongings, and began their next big life’s adventure together—answering the call of the Camino de Santiago.
Along their spiritual journey, Peter and Kristin capture many of the moments they shared with other folks they met on the Way. Some of these fellow travelers had a profound effect on them, and the couple considers the meetings to be more than a mere coincidence.
For example, one morning after the couple woke up, Kristin couldn’t find her passport. With a history of depression, Kristin began “freaking out” about the situation. Even though they later found the passport at the bottom of her backpack, a dark cloud hung over her despite Peter’s best efforts to cheer her up.
Married couple Peter Fleisher and Kristin Dickerson discovered some valuable insights during their journey in “Camino de Santiago: Faith Walk” (Spirit & Nature Productions)
Suddenly, a British woman named Laura, whom they’d met before, showed up on the trail at just the right moment to talk with Kristin and get her to realize some things about herself that she hadn’t considered before. After their talk, Kristin felt rejuvenated and the dark cloud dissipated. This is one of many transformational events that Kristin interpreted as God delivering insightful messages to her—through the various people they met along the way.
Initially, Peter and Kristin did not expect to make a movie, they simply had a lot of film footage. But after the journey, they realized that by sharing their experiences in the format of a film, they could help to inspire others seeking their own spiritual path.
Along the way, both express gratitude to God for guiding them on their beautiful—physically as well as spiritually—journey. They said the pilgrimage made them stronger in their faith and opened their eyes to new horizons, filling their hearts and souls with joy and a new appreciation of life.
“Camino de Santiago: Faith Walk” is a film that should appeal to both Christians and non-Christians alike. Its universal message of stepping outside of one’s comfort zone and going on a transformative journey should be shared with anyone interested in personal growth. This inspiring documentary is available to watch on Epoch Cinema.
Camino De Santiago: Faith Walk
Director: Peter Fleisher Running Time: 1 hour, 42 minutes MPAA Rating: Not Rated Release Date: May 6, 2022 Rated: 4 stars out of 5
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.
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