Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity Second Camino Pilgrimage was another hopeful heritage journey. Walkers and bikers gathered near the location of a former public school where Teresa Gramlich, our Community foundress, taught in Pine Grove, WI. Today this area is called Whitelaw, WI.
Archivist Sister Caritas Strodthoff read Mother Gabriel’s (Teresa Gramlich) own account of her days as a public school teacher. On the weekend Teresa walked or received a wagon ride to Clarks Mills from some of the parents of the children she taught. The Fullmer family were especially helpful. Daughter Pauline felt the call to become like her teacher and would eventually become our future Mother Alexia.
The 7 mile trek to Clarks Mills included walking near the current St. Michael Catholic Church. Very close to this location was the former Fullmer home. After reaching Hempton road outside of town, pilgrims walked peacefully, but picked up the pace with the arrival of flying insects in the area called Mosquito Junction.
On arrival in Clarks Mills, cradle of our religious community, there was time for resting, more conversation, personal prayer and Eucharist. Father Richard Klingheisen, current pastor, presided at an 11 a.m. Eucharistic liturgy. Lunch followed on the parish front lawns.
Pilgrims then left the church grounds and trekked from Morgan Road to Highway H to Century Road, before arriving at Alverno Road via Middle Road. Blessed with cold water on the way from a motorist, we walked among many waves of welcome from other drivers the last 9 miles. Needless to say with the coming of our 150th anniversary in two years, we are already planning next summer’s Camino.