Hildegard Pilgrimage with Deacon Shanon Sterringer, ARCWP - Day 4 - Cologne Cathedral
Shanon Sterringer, ARCWP, drove the Hildegard Pilgrims to Cologne Cathedral. Her commentary follows:
On the last day of our pilgrimage we made a trip to the Cathedral of Cologne / Koln. This has been a popular place of pilgrims for centuries. This monumental structure took over six-hundred years to construct and is in a constant state of renovation and repair. The Cathedral is the resting place for a reliquary claiming to contain the three kings/magi. Over the door post of almost every house and business in the area one will find the Epiphany blessing with the date and initials of the traditional magi. Historically, the Scriptures do not confirm that there were three kings, only three gifts - gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Nonetheless, it is an extraordinary building. We arrived in time to join the community for noon prayer (surprisingly it was led by a woman in an alb) and joined a procession behind the sanctuary to the reliquary of the magi. As we processed I kept thinking this is one of those stories where we could say, "If it didn't happen that way it should have!" because it makes a great story! As far as the pilgrimage, it is important to note that St. Hildegard preached here at the Cathedral of Cologne. Also, at the end of her life when she and her convent were place under an interdict for burying a "heretic" in the monastery grounds, it was the testimony of her friend, Philip, the Archbishop of Cologne, that liberated Hildegard and her sisters from the interdict.