Around 1200, a new type of construction emerged along the Way of St James in Northern Spain, consisting of a burial church associated with a hospital. Several of these churches (Sancti Spiritus in Roncesvalles, Santa María de Eunate, Santo Sepulcro in Torres del Río, and San Juan de Acre in Navarrete) included architectural elements with funerary connotations that directly evoked Jerusalem. This paper suggests that it is highly probable that these forms were employed at the express wish of their lay founders, which in all documented cases were women. There is evidence that in some cases, the ladies eventually donated their churches and hospitals to orders based in the Holy Land (Knights Hospitallers and Canons of the Holy Sepulchre), probably because these specialised in funerary services and were sympathetic to lay spirituality.