HPU Students Explore Spain and Ecotourism During Fall Pilgrimage

HPU Fall Pilgrimage 1

High Point University students are participating in Fall Pilgrimage this week. The group is walking 93 miles in Spain from Sarria to Santiago de Compostela, which is the culmination of the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route.

students in Spain

HPU’s Fall Pilgrimage group is hiking 93 miles in Spain to the alleged burial site of the Biblical apostle St. James.

HIGH POINT, N.C., Oct. 17, 2019 – A group of High Point University students are walking 93 miles through Spain during a Fall Break Pilgrimage focused on the intersection of spirituality and service.

The students are walking a portion of the 1,000-year-old pilgrimage known as the Camino de Santiago, or the Way of Saint James, which many believe leads to the burial site of the saint. Their route is taking them from Sarria to Santiago de Compostela.

“Our pilgrimage programs seek to allow students to journey into the world while simultaneously journeying deeper into themselves to discover who God is calling them to be,” said Rev.

HPU Fall Pilgrimage 3

HPU students are participating in an ecotourism project called Recycling Path led by Ecoembes, a nonprofit that takes care of the environment through recycling and eco-design of packaging in Spain. Sophie Carter (right) holds up a bag of trash she and Jason Stateham (left) collected from the trail.

Preston Davis, minister to the university. “This is an incredibly grueling walk, mostly uphill and in the cold, fall rain. They’re doing something very difficult and thus very rewarding. It’s also humbling to think of the millions of pilgrims who have done this pilgrimage before us and the millions who will come after us. We are part of a living stream of people, taking part in a living story of journeying toward deeper faith.” 

During the walk, they are participating in an ecotourism project called Recycling Path with nonprofit organization Ecoembes. The organization is dedicated to recycling and eco-friendly packaging throughout Spain. HPU students are responsible for helping the mission of Ecoembes by picking up trash along the Camino de Santiago and recycling it at various stops along the way.

“The Camino is teaching us the balance between focusing on the destination and embracing the journey,” said Dezi Tulipano, an HPU student. “Some days it is about getting to the next town, and other days it is about taking in a moving river. We have to do both.”

The students will return to HPU on Oct. 19.


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