From Nidaros to Rome and Jerusalem

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Pilgrims Crossing Borders
is a  pilgrim relay from Trondheim/Nidaros to Rome and Jerusalem, planned to take place in 2015. When and where? Click here!

Read the German version

The distance from  Nidaros to Rome is approximately  3000 kilometres.  If we walk around 20 km a day, it will take us something like six months to get to Rome.

The point is not really to send a group of pilgrims off on the whole long journey. Rather, we envision a  relay walk with many participants from several countries, where pilgrims from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Austria, Italy, UK, USA – and other countries – literally join in passing on a specially made pilgrim staff and a special diary from Nidaros to Roma – and then on to Jerusalem.

It sounds ambitious, but we think it’s possible. If our pilgrimage started in Trondheim in April 2015, we would arrive in Rome in October the same year. The next stage would depend on how we travel, but we expect to arrive in Jerusalem in the autumn of 2015.

150 pilgrims from Australia, Austria, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Italy,  Spain, Sweden, USA, UK and Norway have already signed up to participate. 

International cooperation
“Pilgrims Crossing Borders” will follow existing pilgrimage routes where possible. Through Europe we will follow the “Romweg of Stade” which goes from Stade, near Hamburg, then crossing Germany, Austria, Northern and Central Italy to Rome. This route follows the itinerary of the Abbot Albert von Stade in the 13th century. The route is being promoted by the German association Via Romea Stadensis and the Italian Via Romea Germanica.

The old Pilgrim Way from Stade to Rome.
Map by Jochen Heinke (c)
Eight European Pilgrim Associations are taking part in the relay: The Pilgrim Confraternity of St. Olav, The Confraternity of St. James, Norway, The Pilgrim Confraternity of St. Hallvard, Nordjysk Pilgrimsforening, Via Romea Germanica, Jakobsgemeinschaft Tirol, Via Romea Stadensis, The Gruppo dei Dodici and the Club Alpino Italiano (CAI).

The European Institute of Cultural Roads, the European Association of the Via Francigena and the National Pilgrim Centre in Norway have endorsed the idea of our pilgrim walk from Nidaros to Rome and Jerusalem. Other international participants may join. Consider yourself invited!

The pilgrim staff – which has been specially made for this event – will start its journey from Trondheim on April 22nd 2015. The Norwegians will walk - or ski, depending on the weather.  Transport solutions will be chosen if necessary as the main idea is to keep to the schedule and ensure that the staff and the diary arrive at their destination at the agreed time and place.

The itinerary below should give you an idea of what we have in mind.

Pilgrims Crossing Borders´  Itinerary 

Our Route
Departure dates 2015
Trondheim/Nidaros - Oslo
22 April – 23 May
Oslo  – Larvik
23 May 29 May
Larvik – Hirtshals
29/30 May
Ferry, one day only
Hirtshals – Flensborg
30 May – 21 June
Flensborg – Hamburg/Stade
21 June – 2 July
2- 3 July

Stade – Augsburg
3 July – 15 August
Augsburg – Austrian Border
16 August  – 25 August
Austrian Border  – Brenner Pass
25 August  – 28 August
Brenner Pass  – Orvieto
29 August – 7 October
Orvieto – Rome
7 October  – 14 October
14 – 16 October
3 days in Rome
Rome ­ – Tel Aviv
17 October

Nazareth – Jerusalem
18 October – 28 October
Average distance per day: 22 km /13 English miles

In addition to the grand relay from Trondheim to Rome, there will also be an over-lapping pilgrim walk from Rome to Santa Maria de Leuca in South Italy from 24 August until 12 October.

Detailed itineraries

Our Walk in the Holy Land

We  will take a plane from Rome to the Holy Land  17 October 2015. Once there, we will follow this trail: Nazareth – Sebastia – Nablus – Ariel – Aboud – Jifna – Jerusalem.  The distance is approximately 170 km, and we expect to be on our way for 10 days. Estimated time of arrival in Jerusalem is ultimo October 2015. Those who wish, may choose to continue on a pilgrim walk from Jerusalem via Bethlehem and Jericho to the Jordan valley, an excursion that will take 3- 4 days.  Dates and details will follow.

Welcome pilgrims 
Pilgrims who wish to participate in the walk should contact the local arrangers, i.e. the pilgrim confraternities and/or contact persons who are responsible for the stages

We invite groups as well as individual wanderers to join the walk for one or more stages. To sign up, contact the person who is responsible for the stage(s) you would like to join. Contact details

Pilgrims who wish to join the walk along other pilgrim trails towards Rome and Jerusalem are welcome to participate. Our walk should symbolise diversity and togetherness.

We are optimists and hope that many people will want to join. We are looking forward to getting to know pilgrims from near and far. All participants who wish to participate are invited to participate in the celebration on arrival in Rome on 15 October 2015. We have invited the Trondheim Soloists and other performers to add to the celebration. The time and place for the events will be announced on this blog, where you will also find more information, plans, schedules and contact lists.

You are invited to join our pilgrim relay.

Best regards,

Alberto Alberti (Rete dei Cammini)

Stein Thue (The Pilgrim Confraternity of St. Olav)

Einar Vegge (Pilgrim Pastor in Nidaros/Trondheim)

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