The house of the Oblates in Aix-en-Provence is located along the ancient Via Aurelia which the way today for the pilgrims from either Saint-James de Compostela or Rome. Oblates are faithful to the principle: whoever welcomes a stranger, it is God that welcomes, offer accommodation to pilgrims.
On April 13th, 2015, the Oblates received a group of pilgrims who go from Aix to Arles. Brother Benoît DOSQUET, wanting the footsteps of Father TEMPIER who joined the Missionaries of Provence in Aix which is away from Arles where he was ministering as a pastor.
Here are some excerpts from the diary of Isa, one of the pilgrims, telling the start of the pilgrimage: “Here we are in front of the Chapel of the Oblates in Aix-en-Provence … The Mass gathers every mind on this particular day … Some already have the experience of this pilgrimage, for others it will be their first time. A start is always thrilling, exciting, disturbing. The pilgrimage, we speak before, during, and after … We are gathered in the small reception room of the Oblates pilgrims to inaugurate the icon of Our Lady of the Guardia, representing a Virgin appearing to a shepherd offered by our Italian friends … We are thirteen pilgrims. The Cours Mirabeau welcomes our first steps on the Aurelian Road. ”
The pilgrimage ended in Arles with the opening of the sign of the Way of Saint James to Compostela and Rome. The sign states: Rome by via Aurelia is 1154 km, Saint James de Compostela is 1560 km.
Krzysztof ZIELENDA, OMI