Our days begin early here, and on day two we began by heading to Nazareth, first to visit our good friend and long friend of the Diocese of Olympia, Archdeacon, the Rev. Samuel Barhoum, Head Master of Christ Episcopal School, a School begun in the 1850s and now one of the major educational institutions in Nazareth with over 1000 students in all grades, Muslim and Christian, living and learning together in harmony. Christ Church School is a beneficiary ministry of the American Friends of the Diocese of Jerusalem, the Board of which I serve.
We had a presentation, some warm hospitality and then moved to the actual Christ Anglican Church, where we celebrated the Eucharist together.
Then, to lunch, and then on to the Basilica of the Annunciation, and then the Synagogue Church, and then the Orthodox Church which is the keeper of Mary’s well.
Then back to Pilgerhaus for a more leisurely night.
Day 3 is our “compact” day, on the shores of the Sea of Galilee. On this day we can almost walk to every sight, just as Jesus did, even though we do board the bus each time. We spend the day within a few miles of shoreline, where almost 80% of the stories we of Jesus took place. Here it is no doubt that you are on land where Jesus walked, seeing views that he most surely looked out upon. We began with Eucharist on the shores, at the Church of the Multiplication.
Then on to the St. Peter’s Primacy, then to Capernaum,
Then to Magdala, a newly discovered site, with amazing archeology of a synagogue from Jesus’ time.
Then to lunch, for St. Peter’s Fish, we know it as Tilapia! And after a good lunch again to the shore of the Sea of Galilee for a boat ride on the Sea
After a presentation of the ancient boat found from Jesus’ time on display at the kibbutz we called it a day and returned to our rooms, and after a brief rest had a nice presentation by the Rev. Kate McDonald, a Church of Scotland pastor who is heading up some amazing justice ministries in Tiberias, and will be our host for church tomorrow. Then a good dinner and finally to rest.
I think we make an amazing choir. Here are a few verses from thehymns for today
We also received word that the great poet Mary Oliver died this week. I end with her words, entitled “The Journey”
The Journey One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began, though the voices around you kept shouting their bad advice–though the whole house began to tremble and you felt the old tug at your ankles. “Mend my life!” each voice cried. But you didn’t stop. You knew what you had to do, though the wind pried with its stiff fingers at the very foundations, though their melancholy was terrible. It was already late enough, and a wild night, and the road full of fallen branches and stones. But little by little, as you left their voices behind, the stars began to burn through the sheets of clouds, and there was a new voice which you slowly recognized as your own, that kept you company as you strode deeper and deeper into the world, determined to do the only thing you could do–determined to save the only life you could save.