INTERNATIONAL WAY OF ST JAMES IN SLOVENIA
The Association of Friends of the Way of St. James in Slovenia was established in 2000 following the example of other European nations and countries in order to revive the tradition of Slovenian mediaeval pilgrimage and journeys along the pathways that lead to Compostela.
“Many a pilgrim goes to Rome, to Compostela,
or where St. Anthony watches over Jesus,
visits Trsat or St. Lušarje
once in his lifetime, or Mary’s Celje ”,
the greatest among out poets, France Prešeren, says in his sonnet and with these very verses puts some spirit into the pilgrimage memory of our predecessors who, in times long past, made religious journeys to the shrine of the apostle James to Spain, to faraway Galicia which was considered the third pilgrimage of the world, next to Jerusalem and Rome.
WAY OF ST. JAMES IN SLOVENIA
The description in the International Guide to the “European Pathways to Compostela” which in the Middle Ages provided a route to Compostela, the historical and archives sources, mediaeval murals presenting the miracle of St. James and mediaeval statues of St. James in Slovenian churches as well as folk songs on the pilgrims of St. James are the benchmarks for the members of the Association in researching the Middle Ages’ pathways traversing Slovenian territory and leading to Compostela. Where does the pathway of St. James, better known as camino which is Spanish for a way, run in Slovenia? Europe was criss-crossed with footpaths that led to Compostela; and Slovenian territory was no exception in its being mapped with “the footpaths that used to be”.
The central pathway which was named the trunk of St. James’s Way takes its course from the Croatian border at the Obrežje border crossing through Ljubljana towards Trieste. Its Upper Carniolan branch runs from Ljubljana via Korensko sedlo (Wurzen Pass) to Austria or via Svete Višarje to Kanalska dolina in Italy and on to Compostela. From the Hungarian border towards central Slovenia the third direction, the so-called Hungarian branch, is indicated among other things with the names of former pilgrimage shelters Špitalič at Žička kartuzija (Domus in Valle Sancti Johannis), Špitalič in Tuhinjska dolina (the Valley of Tuhinj), a ceramic cup found at the castle of Celje…
Even today the following words hold true:
“Compostela, the land of Slovenia
the traveller whose home is Carniola
bears witness of this”,
the words by the priest Joža Lavtižar which were published in a calendar by Mohorjeva družba in 1909, describing his pilgrimage to Compostela to the shrine of the apostle James in Spain.
Information on Accommodation and Food Facilities along the Way of Saint James in Slovenia and Other Instructions
A Credencial, i.e. Pilgrim’s Passport, may be obtained before starting the pilgrimage at the office of the Association of Friends of the Way of Saint James in Slovenia. It can also be sent by post. A Credencial is stamped during the pilgrimage with the stamps of the Slovenian Way of St James at the churches of St James and/or with the stamps of the places where pilgrims sleep, such as hostels, monasteries, parishes, and other places. A certificate of the Slovenian Way of St James, the Slovenian “Compostela”, is granted after a copy of the credencial is provided. It is recommended to be equipped with an ink pad such as mountaineers use.
For more information, please contact:
Igor Vidmar: +386 (0)70 828 707 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Miro Veldin: Mobile: +386 (0)40 933 563
Barbara Kosi: Mobile: +386 (0)41 500 371
The Central Way Of St James Through The Lower Carniola (Dolenjska) Region And The Littoral (Primorska) Region
The Upper Carniola (Gorenjska) Way
The Prekmurje – Styria (Štajerska) Way
Dear pilgrims, we hope we have stirred up a tinge of interest in where our predecessors used to tread so that you may come to a decision to embark on the same journey. Today, people are always in a hurry, unable to stop and find the way to their inner selves and those around them. Now that so many times money is scarce for special “destinations”, as people can often be heard saying, our inner peace of mind and tranquillity are within our reach: making a pilgrimage along the way of St. James in Slovenia.