.- A sculpture of Pope Benedict XVI will be erected in Santiago de Compostela, Spain by the time he visits the city this fall. The work is being promoted as a "public homage" to the Pontiff.
The city is celebrating the Jacobean Year, a jubilee year observed every time the Feast of St. James, July 25, falls on a Sunday. The Holy Father is taking advantage of this year-long celebration to make a stop in the city on November 6.
In light of Benedict XVI's visit, the city is dedicating a monument to him that is made out of bronze and looms more than seven feet tall. According to the artist, Candido Pazos, it will be placed along one of the routes by which pilgrims enter the city while on the famed Camino de Santiago (Way of St. James).
When Pazos unveiled the plans last month, he was quoted by EFE news agency as saying the spot had been chosen for the sculpture "so that, in the entrance of the pilgrims to Compostela, they may find themselves beside the Holy Father."
There are several different ways to walk âthe Way," which has at least 10 official routes, including the "English" route and the popular "French" Route. Pilgrims have been making the trip for over 1,000 years now.
According to the statistics released by the pilgrim's office in Santiago for July, there were over 42,000 pilgrims who arrived in the city over the course of the month, 200 of them came by horse. This is an increase by one-third over the number of pilgrims who made the trek in the same month during the last Holy Year in 2004.