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Via Alpina Sacra - A 2,700 mile pilgrimage across the Alps - FREE screening of the film till Christmas

donjohannes

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Austria - Santiago (1998)
Liechtenstein - Jerusalem (via Russia, Armenia etc) - and back (2013-2014)
After having walked to Santiago, Rome and Jerusalem in 2018 I set out on yet another pilgrimage: the Via Alpina Sacra - a route comparable in length to the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) but with twice the positive elevation change. Traversing 8 countries and an entire mountain range, by the end I had visited more than 200 spectacular churches, chapels, crosses, monasteries and places of pilgrimage. Their stories will be recounted more fully in the book (visit 4kmh.com - click ENG next to Via Alpina Sacra - for more info on availability).
But right now the film - a short (93min) glimpse into 125 days of glory and trial - is available for FREE with a Promo Code. In case you chose to still buy it or donate: the proceeds from the film will be forwarded as a donation towards the restoration of the chapel on Mount Thabor. At 3,178 m - 10,400 ft - it is the highest shrine in France. With warming temperatures and the melting of the perma frost its foundations have suffered greatly and are in need of repair.

Where to find the film? Here: https://www.reelhouse.org/birettballett/via-alpina-sacra

Promo Code to watch it free: SANTIAGO (apply at checkout)

Please note that a few brief parts from my trail diary (German) and the wonderful remarks of the abbot of St. Honorat (French) are subtitled.

I set up this Promo-Code for the people on these forums, but you are free to share this information anywhere. The promo code remains valid until Christmas day. These are difficult times for many. But while Corona might lock us up in our homes, the mind is free to wander. I hope you'll enjoy this "window" into the outdoors we all hope to be able to return to again soon.

Cheers from Italy and have a blessed Sunday,
Fr. Johannes
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(May 2018)
VdlP (2022?)
Many Thanks Fr Johannes.
A note for anyone renting or buying the movie.
There are options for you to choose the amount you wish to pay, which is a nice touch.

Wow @donjohannes I just started to watch it.
You've really taken your cinematography and story telling to another level !
Amazing journey.
Look forward to watching the whole thing tonight after work.
 
Last edited:

Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018)-Frances, Baztan, San Salvador, Primitivo, Fisterra,VdlP, Madrid
Many thanks - I too have just watched the trailer and I'll definitely be back!
 
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kelleymac

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
March/April 2015, Late April 2016, Sept/Oct 2017, April 2019.
I watched this last night. Thank-you! I am sharing it with friends, esp. my German teacher who is Austrian, and turns 94 this year. She is a woman of great strength and faith, and used to walk in the Alps near her home. Again-- thank-you.
 
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Martin Cole

Love being a pilgrim walker
Year of past OR future Camino
2015-2019 French x3 Portugese x2 Primitivo x1 English x1, Muxia x1 Cancelled 2020!!
Sorry guys, it is asking me to rent or buy it, I cannot see where you put the free code?
Thanks
 

donjohannes

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Austria - Santiago (1998)
Liechtenstein - Jerusalem (via Russia, Armenia etc) - and back (2013-2014)
@Martin Cole
Here is how to do it:
1) You click rent or buy. A form appears.
2) No paypal or credit card info required (unless you want to donate something). You just put the code into the field "Promo Code" (it is in the 4th row of the form).
3) With the code entered correctly you will see that the amount changes automatically to 0 (and hence no payment info required)
4) all you need to do now is to put in your email (and in the next step choose a password). With this you are set (and now have a Reelhouse account) where you have 48 hours to watch the film or download it, depending on weather you selected rent or buy.

I realize that it would be easier watching it on youtube, but outside this special offer for you guys I'm raising donations for the restoration of the chapel on Mont-Thabor (which is where proceeds are going). Hence the paywall (and work around)
 

donjohannes

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Austria - Santiago (1998)
Liechtenstein - Jerusalem (via Russia, Armenia etc) - and back (2013-2014)
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Old Bamboo

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF, Francigena, KumanoKodo,Benedetto, Iseji, Assisi, Kunisaki, Shikoku 88 (1~24), Kohechi,Dajia Mazu
I followed your instructions, downloaded the film & enjoyed it thoroughly. What a feat! Now I'm interested to investigate your marathon hike to Jerusalem. Fantastic.
 

Sherr

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Portugues
After having walked to Santiago, Rome and Jerusalem in 2018 I set out on yet another pilgrimage: the Via Alpina Sacra - a route comparable in length to the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) but with twice the positive elevation change. Traversing 8 countries and an entire mountain range, by the end I had visited more than 200 spectacular churches, chapels, crosses, monasteries and places of pilgrimage. Their stories will be recounted more fully in the book (visit 4kmh.com - click ENG next to Via Alpina Sacra - for more info on availability).
But right now the film - a short (93min) glimpse into 125 days of glory and trial - is available for FREE with a Promo Code. In case you chose to still buy it or donate: the proceeds from the film will be forwarded as a donation towards the restoration of the chapel on Mount Thabor. At 3,178 m - 10,400 ft - it is the highest shrine in France. With warming temperatures and the melting of the perma frost its foundations have suffered greatly and are in need of repair.

Where to find the film? Here: https://www.reelhouse.org/birettballett/via-alpina-sacra

Promo Code to watch it free: SANTIAGO (apply at checkout)

Please note that a few brief parts from my trail diary (German) and the wonderful remarks of the abbot of St. Honorat (French) are subtitled.

I set up this Promo-Code for the people on these forums, but you are free to share this information anywhere. The promo code remains valid until Christmas day. These are difficult times for many. But while Corona might lock us up in our homes, the mind is free to wander. I hope you'll enjoy this "window" into the outdoors we all hope to be able to return to again soon.

Cheers from Italy and have a blessed Sunday,
Fr. Johannes
Good day, Fr. Johnannes,
I am a writer and editor; English is my maternal language. Below are my comments (I hope they are helpful):
1) readabilty: 8/10. In journalism the writing level is generally targeted toward a grade 8 level ... I think yours is higher than that but it was not an issue for me personally.
2) flow: overall, good, I would say 7.5/10. There were some parts that tripped me up, e.g. "Forty is not twenty." I wanted to know what that meant so it stopped me for few seconds.
3) linguistic soundness: 8/10; there are some spelling and grammatical mistakes which could be easily corrected but I don't want to sound judge-y because your English is infinitely better than my German.
4) content: captivating, 8/10. I really enjoyed your observations and details of your journey, e.g. Karsten on the bus, thought processes, and historical and religious notes.
5) how likely you personally would be to read beyond the pages translated: 9/10. I would certainly continue to read it because I am interested in the subject matter. If you want to extend your audience reach beyond an already committed audience (like readers of this blog), I would suggest that you give more information about yourself and why you decided to make this journey as people tend to appreciate that personal touch and how they may relate to you.
PS. I liked the gently humorous touches like "how much ice cream eaten" and the Italian on his phone :) Also, all photos will need to have a brief description underneath for the reader.
Thank you for this opportunity to comment and hopefully help. Please feel free to send me a personal message if you wish to do so.
Sherry
 

lunna

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
frances; lisboa-muxia; norte+bayonne; vdlp; le puy; voie d'arles+aragones; geneva to ales
I am not a Christian, but I found your film absolutely moving and genuine. Vielen dank dafuer!
 

lunna

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
frances; lisboa-muxia; norte+bayonne; vdlp; le puy; voie d'arles+aragones; geneva to ales
So ein wunderschoener und weiser Film! Obwohl ich Jude bin, fand ich Dein Film zutiefst bewegendVielen dank dafuer!
 

Nocheechako

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances in 2015 & 2016. Portuguese, Muxia next.
Thank you so much for sharing. My wife and I enjoyed your film.
 
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John Gilliland

The Pilgrim Continues
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Ingles June 2017
Camino Portugues May 2019
What a beautiful film! Thank you. Now, how did you film it? Did you place your camera and walk away and then back or did you use a drone?
 

donjohannes

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Austria - Santiago (1998)
Liechtenstein - Jerusalem (via Russia, Armenia etc) - and back (2013-2014)
@Old Bamboo
Glad you liked it. I guess the only thing I have about my walk to Jerusalem ist film "To where God dwells" (60 min). Also available on Reelhouse. https://www.reelhouse.org/birettballett/to-where-god-dwells It is in English. Though I should note (as I did in the other thread), that it is very different from the Via Alpina Sacra travel doc. It is a journey into silence and there is just original sound and no music or talking for almost the entire film. The scenes are windows into days along the way. Some, I'm sure, would find it utterly boring but those who are pilgrims might feel like joining me for a little while. In case you chose to watch it and you do enjoy it, I can recommend you the film "Into Great Silence" which was the inspiration for that approach.

@Sherr
thank you kindly for taking the time to read through the pages and your feedback. It means all the more since this a what you do for work. Thanks also for the points you raise about reading level and personal details (or lack thereof).

@lunna
Thank you for the feedback. I'm glad you enjoyed the film. In fact it briefly shows footage from the section of trail that was also used during jewish "Bricha" after the war in 1947. Jews mainly from Eastern Europe were guided (smuggeled) across the Krimmler Tauern into the American sector (since the British who had the mandate for Palestine did not want them to emigrate to Israel). The Film shows this route from about min 28:30 to 29:30.

@Nocheechako @Akbunny59
thank you for your kind words

@John Gilliland
thank you. Yes, as you say: setting up the camera and walking through the frame for the most part. Plus a Gopro on a trekking pole. I did not own a drone back in 2018. That has changed with the "travel sized" Mavic Mini which I have since added to my gear. Though I won't upgrade to the Mini 2 that just came out. For while the new Mini shoots 4k it does so only in 30fps. 60fps is available only in 1080p (like in the first Mini) and 60fps is what I shoot in with a drone to have more flexibility in editing. Since I don't fly in civilisation the improved range does not really matter much to me.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2011), Camino Frances (2015), Camino Ingles (2017), Camino Muxia (2017), LePuy(2019)
Thank you so much. I watched the video over the Thanksgiving weekend, and I am in awe by the pilgrimage itself and the technical filming. I did wish for a map from time to time so I could orient myself better. I was struck by the profundity of the abbot's words and your own thoughts about superficiality of "knowing others."
 

Scorpio1983

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Leon to Santiago 2017
Lisbon to Santiago 2020
Camino Frances entirely next year 2021
We watched your movie this evening and really loved it. Amazing footage, which must have taken a lot of time to take, especially when you're walking alone. The editing was done really well, the music and changes of scenes were really great work! Thank you so much for sharing your adventure with us :)
 
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Gabi Wehler

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Planning to walk the Camino Frances mid May 2018
Gosh. I will watch this movie together with my partner some time over the next week. Saw the trailer and reading the feedback can’t wait but want to share the moment with someone dear. I first thought you are my cousin as he looks like you and and has the same name. But he lives in Berlin and is not a priest, you must be someone else. 😊.
 

donjohannes

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Austria - Santiago (1998)
Liechtenstein - Jerusalem (via Russia, Armenia etc) - and back (2013-2014)
@TaijiPilgrim
thanks. Yes, the abbot said some great things. When I get around to it, I should include his other answers in a bonus clip. I just ended up using this particular one because it tied in well with the closing thoughts. As I say admidst my stammering on the superficiality of knowing others in the video, I drew on G.K. Chesterton - a brilliant writer (to be read in his tongue in cheek style). In his book "Heretics" (published in 1905) Ch. III he has this to say (discussing Kipling):

The globe-trotter lives in a smaller world than the peasant. He is always breathing, an air of locality. London is a place, to be compared to Chicago; Chicago is a place, to be compared to Timbuctoo. But Timbuctoo is not a place, since there, at least, live men who regard it as the universe, and breathe, not an air of locality, but the winds of the world. The man in the saloon steamer has seen all the races of men, and he is thinking of the things that divide men—diet, dress, decorum, rings in the nose as in Africa, or in the ears as in Europe, blue paint among the ancients, or red paint among the modern Britons. The man in the cabbage field has seen nothing at all; but he is thinking of the things that unite men—hunger and babies, and the beauty of women, and the promise or menace of the sky. Mr. Kipling, with all his merits, is the globe-trotter; he has not the patience to become part of anything. So great and genuine a man is not to be accused of a merely cynical cosmopolitanism; still, his cosmopolitanism is his weakness. That weakness is splendidly expressed in one of his finest poems, "The Sestina of the Tramp Royal," in which a man declares that he can endure anything in the way of hunger or horror, but not permanent presence in one place. In this there is certainly danger. The more dead and dry and dusty a thing is the more it travels about; dust is like this and the thistle-down and the High Commissioner in South Africa. Fertile things are somewhat heavier, like the heavy fruit trees on the pregnant mud of the Nile. In the heated idleness of youth we were all rather inclined to quarrel with the implication of that proverb which says that a rolling stone gathers no moss. We were inclined to ask, "Who wants to gather moss, except silly old ladies?" But for all that we begin to perceive that the proverb is right. The rolling stone rolls echoing from rock to rock; but the rolling stone is dead. The moss is silent because the moss is alive.


The truth is that exploration and enlargement make the world smaller. The telegraph and the steamboat make the world smaller. The telescope makes the world smaller; it is only the microscope that makes it larger. Before long the world will be cloven with a war between the telescopists and the microscopists. The first study large things and live in a small world; the second study small things and live in a large world. It is inspiriting without doubt to whizz in a motor-car round the earth, to feel Arabia as a whirl of sand or China as a flash of rice-fields. But Arabia is not a whirl of sand and China is not a flash of rice-fields. They are ancient civilizations with strange virtues buried like treasures. If we wish to understand them it must not be as tourists or inquirers, it must be with the loyalty of children and the great patience of poets. To conquer these places is to lose them. The man standing in his own kitchen-garden, with fairyland opening at the gate, is the man with large ideas. His mind creates distance; the motor-car stupidly destroys it.

On the true adventure (and clubs and why Family or your neighbor's yard are truely "romantic") he speaks of in Chapter 14 of the same book:

We make our friends; we make our enemies; but God makes our next-door neighbour. Hence he comes to us clad in all the careless terrors of nature; he is as strange as the stars, as reckless and indifferent as the rain. He is Man, the most terrible of the beasts. That is why the old religions and the old scriptural language showed so sharp a wisdom when they spoke, not of one's duty towards humanity, but one's duty towards one's neighbour. The duty towards humanity may often take the form of some choice which is personal or even pleasurable. That duty may be a hobby; it may even be a dissipation. We may work in the East End because we are peculiarly fitted to work in the East End, or because we think we are; we may fight for the cause of international peace because we are very fond of fighting. The most monstrous martyrdom, the most repulsive experience, may be the result of choice or a kind of taste. We may be so made as to be particularly fond of lunatics or specially interested in leprosy. We may love negroes [note: in 1905 this term was not used derogatory - much less by Chesterton who abhored ideas such as Racism] because they are black or German Socialists because they are pedantic. But we have to love our neighbour because he is there—a much more alarming reason for a much more serious operation. He is the sample of humanity which is actually given us. Precisely because he may be anybody he is everybody. He is a symbol because he is an accident.


Doubtless men flee from small environments into lands that are very deadly. But this is natural enough; for they are not fleeing from death. They are fleeing from life. And this principle applies to ring within ring of the social system of humanity. It is perfectly reasonable that men should seek for some particular variety of the human type, so long as they are seeking for that variety of the human type, and not for mere human variety. It is quite proper that a British diplomatist should seek the society of Japanese generals, if what he wants is Japanese generals. But if what he wants is people different from himself, he had much better stop at home and discuss religion with the housemaid. It is quite reasonable that the village genius should come up to conquer London if what he wants is to conquer London. But if he wants to conquer something fundamentally and symbolically hostile and also very strong, he had much better remain where he is and have a row with the rector. The man in the suburban street is quite right if he goes to Ramsgate for the sake of Ramsgate—a difficult thing to imagine. But if, as he expresses it, he goes to Ramsgate "for a change," then he would have a much more romantic and even melodramatic change if he jumped over the wall into his neighbours garden. The consequences would be bracing in a sense far beyond the possibilities of Ramsgate hygiene.

@Scorpio1983 @C clearly
thanks. Glad you enjoyed it.

@Gabi Wehler
Wow, there is a Johannes Schwarz in Berlin that shares my "rugged good looks" 😜? Say hello. I should like to meet that Doppelgänger.
 
Last edited:

Magwood

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
See signature line for links to daily posts to blogs from many caminos
Thank you so much for sharing your film with us. I enjoyed it hugely. Having cobbled together a few very amateur camino related videos I am in total awe of your dedication to the cause. I can only imagine the extra distance you walked over difficult terrain in order to capture some of the footage. I give you 10/10 in every category.
 

donjohannes

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Austria - Santiago (1998)
Liechtenstein - Jerusalem (via Russia, Armenia etc) - and back (2013-2014)
thanks @Magwood . It was not that hard though. As you know, a good wide angle lense helps to make you be small in the big world out there - even without running that far from the cam. When it's beautiful there is the excitement to get to share the grandious landscapes with others. Only when you suffer is it somewhat hard to make the effort to record. But I have learned from a friend in film that this is often the most interesting for others. The Gopro with it's one-button-recording helps in those scenarios, I admit.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2011), Camino Frances (2015), Camino Ingles (2017), Camino Muxia (2017), LePuy(2019)
@TaijiPilgrim
thanks. Yes, the abbot said some great things. When I get around to it, I should include his other answers in a bonus clip. I just ended up using this particular one because it tied in well with the closing thoughts. As I say admidst my stammering on the superficiality of knowing others in the video, I drew on G.K. Chesterton - a brilliant writer (to be read in his tongue in cheek style). In his book "Heretics" (published in 1905) Ch. III he has this to say (discussing Kipling):



On the true adventure (and clubs and why Family or your neighbor's yard are truely "romantic") he speaks of in Chapter 14 of the same book:



@Scorpio1983 @C clearly
thanks. Glad you enjoyed it.

@Gabi Wehler
Wow, there is a Johannes Schwarz in Berlin that shares my "rugged good looks" 😜? Say hello. I should like to meet that Doppelgänger.
donjohannes, like a good priest and teacher, you challenge me to probe myself and my motivation. Why do I walk the caminos or other routes or travel? I have often asked myself those questions and have yet to discover a satisfactory answer. I have often thought that some of my non-roving friends are actually on pilgrimage at home and perhaps finding more there.
 

Manicka

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Lisboa-Santiago-Muxia-Finisterre in 2018.
Volunteer in ACC office 2018.
Thank you, Johannes, for this great movie. It was like walking with you. And the storm and rain looks nice and romantic from a warm seat at home. Of course, I know well what the storms and steady rain can be from both my Camino de Santiago and the Alps. So you have my admiration. Many thanks, God bless your journey.
 

bubba

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015,2016 ,Portuguese 2017,Del Norte 2018, Via De La Plata 2019
Thank you Johannes, a most memorable film, well done Pilgrim !
 

Keith H

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
😱
Wow wow wow. That was absolutely brilliant. The scenery was spectacular. It reminded me in some places of hiking here in NZ. The Southern Alps are quite new in comparison to their Northern brethren and while stunning they can lack the majesty of the connection to the history of mankind. The Maori have fantastic stories and legends about them but they are more akin to your description of the Himalayas. Your story telling style gave inspiration and a feeling of connectedness with not only nature but with the breadth of humankind. Perhaps one day I can walk a few km in your footsteps.
 

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