As readers of the Franciscanum might remember from last summer, in Spain, in the environs of Pamplona, there exists a hermitage in which St. Francis stayed during his first trip to Spain and which later became one of the first foundations of the Order of Minors in the Iberian Peninsula. The Franciscanum published an English translation of a news article about the Hermitage last year.
Also, Last year we shared some photos of the Hermitage, in its degraded state. Among the first Charitable organizations to make a donation to the Spanish Non Profit which is collecting funds for the work was Save Old St. Mary’s Inc., of Massachusetts, USA, the charity which supports The Franciscan Archive and the apostolic works of Br. Alexis Bugnolo.
You too can make a donation to the Spanish non Profit, Asociación de Amigos del Eremitorio de San Bartolomé de Rocaforte, via their website: http://eremitoriodesanbartolome.es/ The total cost of the project will be € 234000 approximately. Their site has more information about the Project (Proyecto) and through their contact form you can get in touch directly with Mrs. Soto.
We are happy to report, from our contact at Rocaforte, Mrs. Maria Soto, that work has begun on the restoration. She has kindly shared with the Franciscanum some photos, which show the repair of the Aspe and Roof of the Church.
That work has begun so soon, it a marvel, considering how expensive historical repairs are in Europe, and that the group caring for the work is not the Order, but a Spanish non profit, which hopes to restore the place as a pilgrimage stop on the way of Santiago.
If you happen to visit Spain this August, be sure to make your way to Rocaforte, near Pamplona, and celebrate the Feast of Saint Bartholomew with them!
Here are the photos of the work in progress at Rocaforte: