The Route

The Via Alpina Sacra was the attempt at the longest pilgrimage route through the alps connecting 8 countries and more than 200 of the largest, most beautiful, oldest, highest, most significant catholic shrines, churches and monasteries. Its length measured about 2,700 miles (4,331 km) with 570,000 vertical feet (173,000 m) of positive elevation change (i.e. counting only ups). Its starting point was the patriarchal basilica of Aquileia (Italy). Its end point was one of the oldest monastic settlements in the West on the island of Saint-Honorat (founded in 410) off Cannes (France).

Here a brief video about the project BEFORE I set out:

The Story told

OUT NOW! You can find the 94 minute feature length travel documentary on The film can be rented ($3) or purchased (5$). Why did I not upload it on youtube? I wanted to give you a chance to become part of this pilgrimage and support a good cause. All proceeds go to restoration of the chapel on Mont-Thabor (more info below). To find it on Reelhouse (now called Projektor) click this LINK

The full Story told

COMING (HOPEFULLY) ... AT SOME POINT! It is happening - sort of. What? The translation of my book. So, where can I get it? Don't know yet. I'm working on it and I hope I can offer you over 400 pages and hundreds of images in 2024. Great. But I won't remember it in February! I understand. So, you can either drop me an email at book((@)) (minus the brackets, those are just there to throw off spammers). You will receive a notification when the book is finished.

The Pilgrim

Patriarchal Beard Wearer, Long Distance Stroller, Yoghurt-Lover, Ice-Cream-Eliminator, Dog-Wisperer, Cow-Conversationalist, Kangal-Fodder, Mosquito-Snob and Horsefly-Hitter are only a few of the pilgrimage related epithets that the catholic priest and part time hermit Fr. Johannes Maria Schwarz has aquired over many miles. The Austrian born clergy man with a PhD in Dogmatic Theology belongs to the Archdiocese of Vaduz and works on media related projects in the German speaking part of the world.

Leave a trace

The highest shrine in France is the chapel on Mont Thabor at about 10.400 feet. I was there last year and with the permafrost melting its crumbling structure is in dire need of repair. I've spoken to some people that are responsible for that place (parish priest and mayor) and as soon as there is a clear plan on how to go forward, I'll post a video about how you can help on my youtube channel and on instagram.

Impressum: Kpl. Johannes M Schwwarz, Oberpuchenauerstr. 11, A-4048 Puchenau, vas[√ĄT]