Day 5 – Santiago de Compostela and Alba de Tormes

Today we got up early to make our way out of Santiago. Before we left, we had breakfast, and most of us made our way back to the Cathedral to pray for a while, enjoying one last time praying before the tomb of St. James.

It was a several hour bus ride across Spain, but we finally arrived in Alba de Tormes in the middle of the afternoon. Alba de Tormes is a quiet little town on the river Tormes that is home to several beautiful old churches, monasteries, and convents. What makes this town significant is that it is home to a Carmelite convent that was founded by St. Theresa of Avila, and it is in the chapel of the convent that St. Theresa is entombed. Her remains are kept in a silver tomb in the reredos, over the main altar. This makes it easy for anyone to visit and pray before this great saint and doctor of the Church.

Upon arriving in Alba de Tormes, we made our way to the convent chapel to pray before St. Theresa for a few minutes, but then left and walked across the square to the church of St. John of the Cross for Mass.

After Mass, we boarded the bus and made our way to our hotel, where we would be for the next three nights. We settled in to our rooms, then met up for our next theological reflection. This one was Lectio Divina and the Word of God, and we had an insightful discussion on learning how to pray with scripture, rather than just reading it or studying it academically. In other words, how do we approach scripture so it touches our hearts, and not just our minds.

After our TR we had dinner at 8:30pm, late for us Americans, but early for the Spaniards.

Tomorrow, we make our way into nearby Salamanca.

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