It is 8:00 p.m. Friday evening February 18, 2011 and Karla and I are making final preparations for an 11 day pilgrimage to the Holy Land. As I stated in an earlier posting a pilgrim is someone who journeys a long distance to a sacred place as an act of religious devotion. I like this definition. We (Karla, myself, and Lois from our church) begin our journey early tomorrow morning by flying to Denver…and then to Newark NJ and then straight to TelAviv, Israel. I know…the first portion of the trip is a head scratcher. Hubs. They are not overrated.
We have made our lists and checked them twice just like santa clause.
We are leaving daily gifts for the younger children (we still have 4 left in the nest) to open each morning in our absence. We are thrilled that a wonderful woman that we have known for years is going to stay with them the bulk of the time. Her youngest son and our two oldest boys competed in baseball together years ago and studied Latin together. We could not be more comfortable in leaving our children with her…a bundle of creative and fun loving energy!
Israel is a small country one-seventh the size of Iowa, yet with 5,250,000 people.
Here is the itinerary for this ambitious guided tour: (I have a 30 page single spaced description of each of these sites and their biblical significance)
Feb. 19, 2011 Flight to Tel Aviv
Feb. 20 Tel Aviv…visit Joppa, the oldest city in the Holy Land and the place where Jonah made a poor decision. Peter raised a woman from the dead here (Acts 9:34-42).
Feb. 21 Caesarea, Mt. Carmel, Megiddo, Valley of Armageddon, Nazareth, Mary’s well, Cana
Feb. 22 Sea of Galilee boat ride, Capernaum, Mt. of Beatitudes, Korazim, Caesarea Philippi, Tel Dan, Katzrin, Golan Heights, Jordan River baptisms
Feb. 23 Beit Shean, Gideon Springs, cross border to Jordan, Mt. Nebo and overnight in Petra
Feb. 24 Petra, recross border to Israel and overnight at the Dead Sea
Feb. 25 Dead Sea swim (float), Masada, Qumran, Jericho, Mt. of Temptation, Valley of the Shadow, Bethany and overnight in Jerusalem
Feb. 26 Mt. Scopus, Mt. of Olives Garden of Gethsemane, Old City via St. Stephens Gate, Pool of Bethesda, Via Dolorosa, Old City, Cardo, Golgotha, Garden Tomb
Feb. 27 Model City of Jerusalem, Shrine of the Book, Yad Vashem, Bethlehem, Shepherd’s Field, Kidron Valley, Mt. Zion, House of Caiaphas, Upper Room, Western Wall, Temple Mount, Farewell Banquet
Feb. 28 Valley of Elah, Emmaus, Church of the Holy Sepulchre
March 1 Back to U.S.A. Overnight in Newark (just 15 miles from the heart of New York City) due to poor availability of flights.
March 2 Home Sweet Home!
To walk in some of the exact same areas that Jesus walked and to be able to see the actual locations where many of the important events of the Bible occurred will surely be an inspiration to us all. I know it is a dream come true for me!Please pray that all will be well with us and with our children while we are away.
Looking forward to the pilgrimage,