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Spiritual Journeys

Editorial: A pilgrimage is described as a journey to a site that has special spiritual powers or significance. The person who makes the journey is called a pilgrim. India is known for its pilgrimage sites and Hindus are encouraged to visit them during their lifetime. One Christian pilgrimage is the shrine of the Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico and the most important Muslim pilgrimage is, of course, to Mecca.

For those of us who are not religious, a pilgrimage can be a journey of self discovery. Jessica Sunter took such a pilgrimage to the medieval town of Santiago de Compostela in Spain. It was a journey of challenge and of meaning and her experience is captured here.

There are four short articles on Costa Rica. Two are profiles of travellers who have information to share—their own kind of self discovery. In one, parents discover they can travel successfully with young children and share how they did it. In the other, a woman celebrating her 60th birthday tells us how she planned a big reunion of family and friends although the task challenged her. We will bring you more profiles in the coming months.

Watching turtles being hatched on the beach in Costa Rica and making their way to the sea is without doubt a miracle of nature, particularly when told they will return to the place of their birth in 10 to 15 years. It reminds me of the monarch butterflies I saw wintering in the El Rosario Reserve in Mexico. Millions and millions of them go there from Canada and northern United States year after year, covering the trees and bushes in a mantle of orange and black. Not a pilgrimage, perhaps, but a very special journey just the same.

Sylvia Fanjoy

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