Oberammergau Passion Play
The Rector and a group of parishioners will be spending 11 days in Europe where they will be visiting great cities – Budapest, Prague, Vienna, Munich – and attending the Oberammergau Passion Play, performed every ten years in the small Bavarian village since the 1600’s as a promise to God for sparing the village from the plague. Here you can find photos and updates about the trip!
Sunday, September 11
Tuesday, September 13
Thursday, September 15: an update from the Rector
Hello from all 21 of us traveling and touring the imperial cities of Europe! Wish you all were here with us and sharing in the many marvelous experiences!
The flights to Vienna, and then on to Budapest were on time, smooth and easy. After being met by our tour manager, Patryk, and bus driver, Patel, we proceeded to our hotel and found that our rooms were all ready - a very welcome treat for weary travelers wanting only a soft pillow for a quick nap before meeting the other members of our tour group and enjoying a welcome dinner to officially start our tour.
The following morning began with a tour of the sights of Budapest, the “queen of the Danube,” the beautiful capital of Hungary. The afternoon found all of us with free time to enjoy visiting the places we most wanted to visit, some souvenir shopping, and sampling some local dishes for lunch. A wonderful dinner with lots of local specialties and then an evening cruise on the Danube closed the evening.
Today found us visiting three national capitals in one day: Budapest, capital of Hungary 🇭🇺; Bratislava, capital of Slovakia 🇸🇰; and into Vienna, capital of Austria 🇦🇹.
An early visit to Schonbrunn Palace began the morning, the summer palace of the Hapsburgs - a tiny place, only 1400 rooms! Then a tour of the city before a walking tour of the old city and free time for the afternoon before an evening concert featuring Strauss and Mozart.
Today we’re off to Prague …. Our love and best wishes to all! See you soon!
Monday, September 19: An update from the Rector
A rainy day, but mostly on the bus traveling to Prague. Midway we stopped to visit the charming village of Chesky Krumlove. This tiny village, with its castle and church, is built in the natural bend of the river, thereby a natural moat was employed for protection. The village, with the winding lanes, tiny houses and shops, and central square, all overlooked by the castle - which is guarded by bears! - looks like a place Disney would have designed.
After lunch we continued on to Prague - the "city of a hundred spires" - actually, there are over 4,000. A wonderful dinner of local specialties and local wine and beer completed our evening.
The next morning, we began with a tour of the castle overlooking the city - and all those spires! A castle has stood on that spot since the 10th century. Descending into the town, we walked the streets of the "new town" - first settled in 1364. After crossing the beautiful Charles Bridge, we ended the morning at the central square in time to watch the medieval astronomical clock strike noon.
After lunch, a tour of the Jewish Quarter was poignant and sobering. Of over a half-million Jewish citizens before the war, less than 5,000 survived to return. The old synagogues, many now serving as museums, are beautiful witnesses to the terrors and tragedies of World War II.
The evening found many of us enjoying a beer and food tour, visiting different breweries and restaurants, and sampling local specialties, all while learning of the brewer's art.
Yesterday, we traveled into Germany and made our way into the Alps and to the charming village of Oberammergau. The Passion Play is this afternoon and evening. More later . . .
An update from the Rector: Tuesday, September 20
We made our way from Prague into Bavaria and the German Alps to the small village of Oberammergau for the spiritual highlight of our trip - the Passion Play. The village is lovely, nestled in the mountains, and comes alive every 10 years for the Passion Play performances from May through early October. To take part in the play, one has to be a native of the village or lived there for more than twenty years. The play is in two parts, each 2.5 hours long, with a break for dinner.
Our final day was in Munich. We made our way through the old city to the main square to see the glockenspiel strike noon and watch its moving figures perform like a giant cuckoo clock. A break for lunch allowed some to visit the Rathskeller and others the Hofbrau House. After a tour of the city highlights, including the royal palace, we enjoyed dinner at a German beer hall for some local specialties. Then a farewell gathering with our tour guide and driver closed the final evening.
The following day, we bid farewell to our guide Patryk and driver Pawel, before boarding our flight home. See you all soon!