Welcome to the website of the Confraternity of Saint James of South Africa (CSJ of SA)
Welcome to the website of the Confraternity of Saint James of South Africa.
Our Confraternity is a voluntary organization that was founded in Cape Town, South Africa, in February 2006 as a Non-Profit, Public Benefit organization.
The Confraternity’s main aim is to assist South African pilgrims who wish to make a pilgrimage to the relics of Saint James which is preserved in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Spain, by means of walking or cycling any of the medieval pilgrim routes which is generally referred to as the “Camino de Santiago”.
We promote a general awareness amongst all South Africans of the cultural diversity and spiritual importance of the Camino de Santiago and we take steps to ensure that this knowledge is imparted to the community as a whole.
Furthermore, we assist our members with advice during the preparation phase of their pilgrimage and we pro-actively research, collect and disseminate information relating to the Camino which is likely to be of use to our members.
Membership of the CSJ of SA is open to all South Africans and is not restricted to those who have made or wish to make the journey to Santiago de Compostela. Note. If you require a Shengen visa you will need to join the confraternity and obtain a pilgrim record. With this we will issue a letter which you must present to the Visa offices in lieu of proof of residence in Spain. They, the Spanish consulate accept this as you being a bone fide pilgrim.
Within South Africa we have six regional chapters, led by regional representatives in the Western Cape (Cape Town), Gauteng (Johannesburg), Kwa-Zulu Natal (Durban), Southern Cape (Knysna), Northern Cape (Springbok) and the Eastern Cape (Port Elizabeth).
One of the key documents which we issue is the Pilgrim Record. This document must be stamped along The Way daily as it serves as confirmation that the bearer has walked at least the last 100 kilometers to Santiago de Compostela. The CSJofSA Pilgrim Record is recognized and accepted by the Pilgrim Office in Santiago de Compostela and is the key requirement for the issuing of the "Compostela".
The Compostela is a certificate of completion of the Camino and is still written in Latin.
Our official publication, “Amigos”, is distributed three times a year to members. In this publication we present articles of general interest about all aspects of the Camino as well as information about local and international activities and events that will be of interest to South African pilgrims. In addition, we publish a quarterly newsletter, “Hola”, in which we provide an updated “Calendar of Events” as well as important information relating to, for instance, visa requirements for South African pilgrims, travel news, New Pilgrim workshop dates, social functions, etc.
If you are interested in the Camino de Santiago or contemplate going on pilgrimage on one of the ancient pilgrim routes in Spain, Portugal or France in the foreseeable future, we would like to encourage you to become a member of our Confraternity.