Pilgrimage to the
Lands of Dominic - 1985
By: Barbara Cooper
Cooper has had a rich and varied life. She was a US WAC, then a
member of the Dominican Laity, before making profession in a
Dominican monastery in Lancaster, PA. In 1969 she joined the
Association of Contemplative Sisters and, with three other nuns,
formed a new monastic community on Vancouver Island, in British
Columbia. Barbara has been there for 40 years. She presently does
Barbara’s reflections on the Sunday scriptures can be found on our
"Preacher Exchange" website. Go to:
In May of 1985
I was privileged to join with the Parable Conference for Dominican Life
and Mission on a Pilgrimage to the Lands of Dominic. In those days, I
had no computer or digital camera (how DID we manage?) but now that I
do, I would like to share this life changing experience through these
much younger me at the airport with ALL my luggage!
About 33 of us
linked together at JFK airport in New York. Over the next three weeks we
would form a community on pilgrimage, soaking in excellent lectures in
the geographical places where our Dominican history grew.
Our flight took us to Madrid airport where we boarded a bus for
Caleruaga, Spain, Dominic's birthplace. I thought a nice early bedtime
was called for after our long flight, double for me coming from the
Pacific North West! But at 7 p.m. that night, shortly after arriving at
the Friary of the Dominican Fathers, we had our opening conference.
Supper wasn't until 9:30 p.m. so we had plenty of time! Did I mention
that I'm a morning person, usually in bed by 9 p.m.!
conference was about four things we would be building on during this
("heart of" is relationship), Community, and
Prayer. These are essentials of Dominican Life and Mission.
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