Holy Land Pilgrimage, Days 6 and 7: Wall and Peace

“Actually—and this was where I began to feel seriously uncomfortable—some such divine claim underlay not just 'the occupation' but the whole idea of a separate state for Jews in Palestine. Take away the divine warrant for the Holy Land and where were you, and what were you? Just another land-thief like the Turks or the British, except that in this case you wanted the land without the people. And the original Zionist slogan—'a land without a people for a people without a land'—disclosed its own negation when I saw the densely populated Arab towns dwelling sullenly under Jewish tutelage. You want irony? How about Jews becoming colonizers at just the moment when other Europeans had given up on

Holy Land Pilgrimage, Day 5: "Because I Gotta Have Faith, Faith"

George Michael was really on to something with his 1987 hit "Faith." No, seriously, you guys! Ever since we arrived in Israel last week, Nick and I have often remarked to each other about the importance of the Holy Land in a way that I would never have thought about had we not made this pilgrimage. There is absolutely no inherent significance to the land between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River; in fact, it is quite insignificant. It is not strategic in any way; it has no natural resources to speak of; it is hilly and rocky and oftentimes not suitable for sustaining human life. The importance of this land is completely reliant on the value that we impart to it. In a word, the

Holy Land Pilgrimage, Days 3 and 4: Judea, Jericho, and Nazareth, Oh My!

So sorry for skipping a day of blogging, y'all! The good news is that means twice as much fun for you to read about today! So, where were we when I last left you? Oh, right . . . Jerusalem! I am convinced that we woke up so early yesterday morning that God had yet to create light. We left St. George's in Jerusalem for our three-day excursion to Galilee very early, riding to Wadi Qelt in silence. Wadi Qelt is on the edge of the Judean desert and is a dry ravine that fills with water after the rains. The wadi overlooks the old Roman road that connected Jerusalem and Jericho, a road that very probably was trod often by Jesus and his disciples. The vista was truly awe-inspiring, and shari

Holy Land Pilgrimage, Day 2: Holy Sepulchre, Batman!

Buckle up, kids! Today was one wild ride through 8 religions in one square kilometer (less than 0.4 square miles for those patriots who don't do metric measurements). And who says there isn't peace in the Middle East? The jet lag is starting to wear off, but 6:30 am still comes mighty early. I don't know who told me this was a vacation, but they were clearly mistaken. After our customary Middle Eastern breakfast of breads, eggs, fruit, and the ever-present veggies and hummus, our guide Iyad laid the groundwork for the quagmire that is the Church of the Holy Sepulchre - also known as the Church of the Resurrection. Two thousand years of wars, natural disasters, and religious in-fighting h

Holy Land Pilgrimage, Day 1: This Place "ISRAELI" Great!

Greetings from the Holy Land! As I sit here at St. George's Guest House with my Taybeh beer (a local Israeli brew similar to Yuengling but, you know... holier) I finally have a chance to think back and reflect on the past 24 hours. The flight over was painless enough, save for the hour of turbulence off the Atlantic Coast of Newfoundland and Nova Scotia where I was certain we would all perish in cold, watery graves. But we didn't, so here we are! Last night was a complete blur of lack of sleep, excitement, and jet lag, but it culminated in a delicious dinner of Maqloobeh (Arabic for "upside down"). Maqloobeh is made with layers of carrots, cauliflower, rice, and incredibly aromatic Middle

Holy Land Pilgrimage - Here we go!

Three of our fellow pilgrims will be creating and posting a daily blog of our adventures right here in the "News and Events" section of the Messiah website. Keep up with our special adventure via the blog beginning soon after we arrive on the 24th. You may also follow us on Facebook.

Manna on Main Street Donations Needed!

The Manna on Main Street donation bins in the back of the Church — Please consider picking up a few extra items for Manna when you do your weekly shopping and dropping them off at church on Sunday. You are also invited to join this ministry. If you are interested in helping deliver donations to Manna please contact Dee Hillas at hillasd3@gmail.com or Jean London at jkslondon18@gmail.com. THANK YOU FOR YOUR GENEROSITY! Immediate Food Needs: *Baby Food Fruits and Vegetables * White Rice *Canned Meat Tuna, Chicken, Spam, Ham ,Clams * Canned Tomatoes and Tomato Sauce As we've advised in the past, those with food assistance cards cannot purchase any of these essential non-food items with tho

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