Japanese first for Walsingham Way pilgrimage walk

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Japanese first for Walsingham Way pilgrimage walk

Former St John’s Cathedral chorister, Ms Keiko Tachibana, may be the first Japanese lady to have completed the Walsingham Way pilgrimage walk from Norwich to Walsingham using part of the recently defined route from London to Walsingham, reports Michael Hughes.

In 2011, Keiko came to Norwich to study English at one of the city’s language schools. Within four days of her arrival she had found, and been accepted as a choir member at the Cathedral Church of St John the Baptist. At the end of her course she decided to visit France with the intention of walking one of the many pilgrim paths to Compestella known as Caminos.

In March she returned to Norwich having completed her eighth Compostella Camino  In between times she has also completed similar treks in Japan  including  the trail of Sacred sites known as Kumano Kodo or Camino de Kumano.  Brought up on a Buddhist environment Keiko regards these walks of up to 800 kilometres as a kind of personal oasis of peace.

On her return to Japan she hopes to find ways of making Walsingham better known to Japan’s 400,000-strong Catholic population and the Christian community in general. Sadly only 1% of Japan’s 126 million people are Christians.

Pictured above is Keiko Tachibana on the Walsingham Way. Picture by Michael Hughes.