"These mountains arouse a feeling of infinity in the heart, with a desire to lift the mind to what is sublime.".
There are places capable of silencing daily worries, where beauty and quiet make it easier to listen to and connect with spirituality. Spaces to recharge and regenerate. A stay in the Dolomites in Belluno can also do this, and this is how St. John Paul II described them.
Accustomed to climbing in summer on his beloved mountains of Poland, winter skiing and canoeing down rough streams, several times Pope John Paul II found Cadore and Comelico the ideal places to spend a few days of rest and vacation.
As a guest at the Mirabello residence in Lorenzago di Cadore, the Pope loved to walk and meditate surrounded by nature. The pontiff spent his days taking easy walks as well as more challenging hikes, moments of reading and reflection in the tranquillity of a forest or the flow of a stream, and meetings with the locals and tourists.
By retracing the paths and places frequented by Pope John Paul II and later by Pope Benedict XVI, you will be able to slow down, regenerate your body and mind and feel that same sense of wonder, calm and spirituality.
Curiosities and suggestions
- The Museum of the Popes in Lorenzago houses photographs and objects that belonged to Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI. Nestled in the fir forests behind Mirabello residence, an open-air sanctuary dedicated to the Pope was opened in 2014.
- “He wanted water from our waterfalls, which he had seen a few minutes earlier”. This was said by Rosalia Martini Barzolai, who ran the Berti Shelter in Comelico, the destination of the Pope’s hikes. Strict safety rules at the time did not allow it, but that was his wish, as it was for many.
- “In times of rest and, in particular, when taking holidays, man is invited to become aware that work is a means and not the end of life, and he has the opportunity to discover the beauty of silence as a space in which to find himself in order to open himself to gratitude and prayer.” (from the Angelus, 1996, Pieve di Cadore)