PILGRIMS will get a glimpse of St. Dominic de Guzman’s life by visiting places related to the foundation of the Order of Preachers, which is set to mark its 800th year next year.

The Coordinator of the Jubilee of the Order, in cooperation with the provincial promoters of the Jubilee, has published an itinerary guide titled “The Path of Dominic,” that contains information on places pilgrims can visit.

“To cross, 800 years later the same roads, towns and to see homes and churches that have marked Dominic’s itinerary, allows us to understand and to internalize the spirituality and the charisma he left to his Order,” the guide says.

The pilgrimage begins in Caleruega, Spain (present-day Castille-Leon) where St. Dominic was born in 1170 and first attended school.

Several places surrounding Caleruega are close to St. Dominic. These places include Gumiel de Izan, where he attended his first school from the age of seven to 14; Palencia, the city where he spent university studies at the Studium Generalis; and Burgos de Osma, where he began his priestly ministry in 1195.

Monasteries closely associated with St. Dominic’s family, such as the Silos or La Vid monastery, show that his vocation was influenced by his exemplary Christian family.

The first Dominican convent founded by St. Dominic can also be found in Segovia, Spain.

Outside Spain

Pilgrims are also encouraged to visit Languedoc, southwest of France, where St. Dominic began his ministry of preaching. St. Dominic preached in Languedoc from 1206 to 1218.

Like Caleruega, places surrounding Languedoc influenced St. Dominic’s ministry of preaching. It was in Prouilhe where St. Dominic founded a monastery to house women that he had converted from heresy. In Carcasonne, St. Dominic became vicar from 1213 to 1214.

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Grumblings

The last destination for pilgrims is Bologna, Italy, where the Dominican Order developed and grew rapidly. Places of interest include the Basilica and the Patriarchal Convent of St. Dominic and the Church of St. Mary and St. Dominic of “Mascarella,” where St. Dominic and his brothers stayed during his visit to Italy in 1219. It was also in this place where St. Dominic died.

The pilgrimage aims not just to reintroduce St. Dominic to the faithful, but also to encourage them to dedicate their lives to preaching the Word of God.

Says the guide: “The travellers will come across not only monuments, but also nuns, brothers, religious people, and [laity] who have decided to unite to Dominic’s path. This is a story that remains alive because today, like yesterday, we are sent to preach the Gospel.”

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