Credenciales and Badges
The credencial is available to members of CCoP who are walking, cycling or riding (horseback) the Camino. It is not only your proof that you are a pilgrim, but it allows you entry to the albergues along …
The Camino de Santiago, aka The Way of St. James, refers to the pilgrimage routes to the shrine of the apostle St. James the Great in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela.
A Membership with Canadian Company of Pilgrims (CCoP) is open to anyone who has walked a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, Spain, or has an interest in, or curiosity about, such a journey. Membership includes some significant benefits.
For example, our Benefits Committee has been working with Trip Merchant, one of our existing partners, to design a 17-day Portuguese Camino experience for our members. The trip follows the spectacular route north from Porto to Santiago de Compostela. It includes hotels (with breakfast), airport transfers, options to transfer your pack between accommodations, and some extras like a CCoP credencial and shell, guided visit to a winery and a farewell dinner. For further information please go to the members benefits section of the website.
Who are the Canadian Company of Pilgrims?
The Canadian Company of Pilgrims (CCoP) is a non-denominational volunteer-run association that supports Canadians interested in the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, Spain. We share the Canadian representation with l’Association québécoise des pèlerins et amis du Chemin de Saint-Jacques.
The CCoP provides information and generates awareness and interest in the Camino to Santiago de Compostela through a network of chapters across Canada and its website and Facebook page. Local Chapters provide a forum for the exchange of information about the Camino and also offer practical training and information sessions to the interested and to prospective pilgrims. The Company also issues Credencials (pilgrim passports) which are recognized by the pilgrimage authorities in Santiago.
This message was from our Honorary Patron, His Excellency Alfredo Martínez, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Spain to Canada, for our 2022 AGM
H.E. ALFREDO MARTÍNEZ, AMBASSADOR OF THE KINGDOM OF SPAIN TO CANADA,
AT THE CANADIAN COMPANY OF PILGRIMS ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
I would like to greet you all and to thank wholeheartedly the organizers of this Annual General Meeting of the Canadian Company of Pilgrims, especially President Lea Pennock, for their very warm invitation to participate as Ambassador of Spain and as a person who loves El Camino de Santiago.
Thanks to each one of you for keeping the Camino alive and flourishing in Canada.
In the middle of this pandemic, I want to share some reflections about the values and lessons that all of us- because I have also been a pilgrim myself – have learned from the Camino:
- The Camino grants you, as a wonderful gift, the opportunity for introspection. Walking in the middle of nature; following a path towards the end; sharing time with yourself to allow you to depart from the rush of a busy life which has an impact on us every day.
- The Camino is a wonderful opportunity to meet others. People from different countries, backgrounds and motivations all come together on the Camino. Everything pushes you to see the best in one another.
- The Camino is a gorgeous chance to encounter nature, culture and art. Since the first pilgrimage by King Alfonso II of Asturias in the IX century, the human spark seeking beauty and transcendence has built the Camino. This approach is still there, alive and vibrant.
- The Camino is definitely an energizing exercise. Walking many kilometers a day you really feel how many things and goods are superficial. You Canadians know better in this wintertime than anybody else because you are compelled to live with layers. Sometimes we put them on as we need them in life but we can never ever forget the authenticity of the need to go deep into our souls to seize what really matters, what is essential, what makes us better. Stage after stage you find yourself getting rid of not necessary, and focus on the fundamentals.
All this happens because the Camino is a metaphor for life and, whatever the motivations might be –and they are as many as the pilgrims you will find on the way- we need to answer at least once in life this central question that asks us: what is the sense of life?; what is its meaning?
As a Spaniard and as Ambassador of Spain, my country which I greatly love and to which I devote my professional life, it is an honour to welcome and embrace the Camino that, as a gift, offers us the possibility to enjoy, suffer, learn, open our hearts and minds and make us grow. Every century, we celebrate twelve holy years, when July 25 falls on a Sunday, and Xacobeo 2021/2022 is one of them. The jubilee tradition not only offers you exceptional experiences, such as entering the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela through the Holy Gate, but also the opportunity to enjoy a hundred extraordinary performances, wonderful Spanish meals, and cultural activities along the road.
I can assure you that all Spanish administrations and agencies are actively involved in making this very special year a success.
The Spanish Embassy in Canada through its Tourist Office, which is fully at your disposal, began the New Year by illuminating the symbol of Xacobeo on the facade of the Cathedral in Ottawa where the ancient church of Saint Jacques was previously built. We were privileged to be accompanied by Mr. Austin Cooke, whose presence was warm, enjoyable and wise, even at 19 degrees below zero.
When everyone is looking forward, after lockdowns and the need for patience, to rediscovering the world, nothing could be better than the Camino, which in this very special year 2022 waits for all of us.
Thank you very much once again and you know that the doors of the Spanish Embassy are fully opened up for you. We really feel proud and grateful to Canada and to the Canadian Company of Pilgrims that, as I underlined at the beginning, is really keeping the Camino alive and going beyond.