‘Emperador’…first municipality to signpost “The Way of the Holy Grail” (VALENCIA)

#Emperador is first municipality to signpost the Way of the Holy Grail.

This Saturday, 30 October, a historic milestone took place in the Valencian Community.

After the granting in 2014 of the jubilee in perpetuity to the Cathedral of Valencia for the custody and devotion to the Holy Chalice of the Last Supper of the Lord, every five years (the next one starts on the last Thursday of October 2025), Emperador has been the first municipality to signpost the path.

Emperador is considered the smallest municipality in Spain. However, it is not because it is the smallest that it should be treated differently on the route. On the contrary, the fact that Mr. Alberto Bayarri Remolí, Mayor of Emperador Town Council, believes in the structuring of the territory and in the preparation of the route after the celebration of two jubilee years, shows his spirit and his vision.

“Sowing future, illusion and hope with projects as solvent as the Integral Sustainable Strategic Plan of the Holy Grail Way is a wonderful way for this municipality to create development opportunities for its inhabitants”, says Don Alberto.

That is why Emperador has carried out an action that will go down in history for its importance. A meeting that does not need a pharaonic budget to consolidate a tourist product, a pilgrimage route that, like that of Santiago, can feed hundreds of thousands of Valencian and Aragonese families.

The City Council of Emperador, supported by all its components, neighbours as well as Doña María José Ferrer, Regional Vice-Secretary of Territory, Community and Culture of the PPCV.

Carles Recio, founder of the Way of the Holy Grail and member of the Cultural Association The Way of the Holy Grail, members of the Brotherhood of the Holy Chalice of Torrente, Pedro Barberán Real and Vicente Arocas Ortega, neighbours of Museros, Massamagrell and Alboraya, among many other guests, also attended the event.

The Association of Housewives of Emperador are the ones who have altruistically carried out the beautiful work of making the tiles that are already part of the route of the path.

The Holy Grail Association, chaired by Dr. Ana Mafé and Mr. Jesús Gimeno, its secretary, have also collaborated in the celebration of this fundamental event for the consolidation of the Holy Grail Way.

During the first part, the president of the Association, Dr. Ana Mafé, thanked the municipality of Emperador, its mayor and all the town councillors. Dr. Mafé has put in value the importance of the time dedicated by its previous president, Don Enrique Senent to the Camino as it was he who left the baton to signpost this route.

For her part, María José Ferrer corroborated these words and subscribed her support to the project. Bearing in mind that all the municipalities governed by the PP have presented a financing project for the Next Generation funds destined for tourism plans.

Finally, Mr. Alberto Bayarri thanked those present and then invited them to visit the laying of the tiles in the municipality,

This action has cost 0 euros to the City Council of Emperador, since the laying of the tiles has been carried out by employees and the elaboration of the same has been carried out by the housewives of the municipality who have donated their work.

This event does not detract from the fact that in the future the administrations will ask for the whole route to be designated as a European Cultural Route.

At this point, we should remember that, in its beginnings, the Way of St. James was signposted altruistically by the civil society, so that later the Administration could make approved signposts.

This action is intended to encourage other municipalities to carry out this action of signposting the Camino, at no cost to the taxpayer.

It was Mr. Carles Recio who recalled that Albalat dels Sorells twenty years ago, under the mandate of Vicente Almenar, already tried a consolidation of ornamentation in one of its roundabouts, with a Holy Chalice of 30 metres, truncated by the circumstances of the moment and that has given rise to Emperador who puts the first signage, in the Community, in this regard.

Signposting the Way of the Holy Grail

There are so many things to be done on this road that perhaps this is the trigger that the mayors need to start sowing.

The path is the result of the work of the Asociación Cultural El Camino del Santo Grial after carrying out different audits and routes on foot and on horseback.

In 2014 the union of synergies between Mr. Fernando Avilés and Ms. Carolina de Funes, members of the Board of Directors of the Cultural Association The Way of the Holy Grail and the University of Zaragoza, allowed the realization of the European project HOLY GRAIL ROUTE.

The funding base of the European Cultural and Heritage Project Holy Grail Route, arose from the cooperation projects to support transnational tourism based on “European Cultural and Industrial Heritage”.

This European project was promoted thanks to the selfless collaboration of the Asociación Cultural El Camino del Santo Graal who provided all the field work, -the equestrian route and other necessary data of the route- to the person in charge of the European project at the University of Zaragoza, Dr. Victoria Sanagustín.

The general objective of this European project is to plan, promote and disseminate the spiritual and cultural route of the Holy Grail.

Once again, the Cultural Association is at the service of the municipalities along the route and in September 2021 presents a total of 13 European projects aimed at 13 municipalities with a budget of two million euros for each of them. All with the aim of not returning funds for lack of projects.

If in the Gospel of Saint Matthew (Mt 20:16) Jesus says: “the last shall be first”, this is how this signposting on the Way of the Holy Grail has been planned. “Providence wanted it this way”, says Dr. Ana Mafé García, President of the Cultural Association The Way of the Holy Grail.

We hope that the rest of the municipalities are encouraged and begin to signpost their local route in order to help pilgrims and walkers who wish to make the Way of the Holy Grail.

We remind you that, for twenty years, the Cultural Association of the Holy Grail Way has had Pilgrimage Credentials where pilgrims can collaborate with a donation of 3€ to support it, as is done on the Camino de Santiago.

Report by 24/7 Valencia team

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