Ah, S James the Great, Compostella ... how often have I sat, perhaps for half an hour or more, just gazing at wonder at the great Portico de la Gloria in Compostella Cathedral. Not, of course, that I've ever been to Spain. Indeed, I don't think I've ever knowingly entered His Most Catholic Majesty's domains at all ... unless the old embassy church of S James, Spanish Place, counts, with its Spanish royal banner just waiting for the parish priest to haul it up the flagpost if he gets a sudden email warning him that the King's Majesty is on his way to pay a visit.
If you can't afford, given the present ruinous state of the exchange rate between Sterling and the Euro, to go to Spain, you can contemplate the Portico de la Gloria ... and Hadrian's column ... and the Plantagenet tombs at Fontevrault ... and the main door of Arles Cathedral ... simply by visiting the Casts Gallery at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
And, as we all know, for those who can't afford a holiday in Italy, there is always the Oratory Church next to the V and A. And, for those who can't afford a visit to France, there is the Racine Restaurant.
25 July 2017
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We had the great privilege of visiting Compostella in March this year as a tour from our cruise ship. This had been on both of our 'wish lists' & it was stunning. The downside was that the giant thurible was not swinging - but you can't have everything!
I'm sad to report, Fr., that Racine has closed. Leon
But London is so much more expensive than any of those other places!
In 2014 I walked the Camino Frances from St Jean de Port through Santiago to Fisterra...the end of the earth,as the Romans believed. 900 k in total with a pack on my back,no i phone or i pad or even timepiece.It was the most wonderful detoxing,hard slog in places,freezing blizzards after Leon and blistering sun up on the Meseta,but it was worth it and I arrived in the Cathedral on the Feast of the Ascension with that holy place packed with Spanish regiments and others. Glorious banners and devotion. Exhausted ,I made my Confession,soaking wet,to a German priest.I recommend the experience and lay down the challenge to any able bodied Catholic.As the tee shirt says:Sin Dolor,no hay Gloria...Without pain,there is no glory. Perhaps that is the message of the Spirit to us now?
Unfortunately, the Racine restaurant is no more.
Sadly the Racine closed in 2015
"there is the Racine Restaurant."
If you mean the one in Brompton Road, Father, I'm afraid it closed two years ago.
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