Pictures from the Holy Land

The Holy Land

Walking in the Footsteps of Jesus

Led by:

The Rt. Rev. Mark Beckwith
Diocese of Newark

February 27 – March 10, 2012

Trip map

DAY 1:  Monday, February 27, 2012 - Depart USA for a trans-Atlantic flight.  Meals on board the aircraft. M

DAY 2:  Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - We will arrive in Tel Aviv, Israel where we will meet our guide and transfer to our waiting motor-coach.  We travel to Herod’s City-Caesarea, once capital of the Roman province.  Here we visit the Roman and Crusader remains and the harbor from which St. Paul was taken prisoner to Rome.  We will visit the fertile valley known as the plain of Megiddo which has been the scene of horrible carnage and almost constant strife.  Legend portrays this area as the stage for the final battle of history:  Armageddon (Rev. 16:16).  The excavations at Megiddo have uncovered a fortified city built by Solomon (1 Kgs. 9:15).  We reach Mt. Carmel with its breathtaking view of the Jezreel Valley before we continue to our accommodations on the shores of the Sea of Galilee for dinner and overnight. D

DAY 3:  Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - We visit the Roman city of Sepphoris where Jesus would have spent much of his early life and then to Nazareth, home of the Basilica of the Annunciation.  We will visit the museum which holds the 1st century boat found in the mud around the Sea of Galilee and then have dinner and overnight at the Sea of Galilee. BD

DAY 4:  Thursday, March 1, 2012 - “He went round the whole of Galilee.” (Mt. 4):  The Sea; Capernaum; Tabgha; Korazin; Mount of Beatitudes.  We begin at Capernaum where we shall walk in the ancient synagogue and see St. Peter’s house.  We continue to Korazin (Mt. 11:21) before traveling to Tabgha where we will see the mosaics of the Loaves and Fishes and celebrate Holy Eucharist.  We will share a St. Peter’s Fish lunch, and then journey to the Mount of Beatitudes to rehear the Sermon on the Mount and then we will hike down to the shore of the Sea of Galilee as Jesus and his disciples would have done.  Dinner and overnight at the Galilee. BLD

DAY 5:  Friday, March 2, 2012 - The upper Galilee:  Hazor; Dan; Golan Heights; Caesarea Philippi; Mt. Hermon:  We travel to Hazor, known in Joshua’s day as “the head of all those kingdoms”.  We continue to Dan, a beautiful nature park which has as its literal high point, the remains of the City of Dan.  Here we can take a walk along the tributary of the Jordan River before we travel to Caesarea Phillipi, once the largest city in northern Israel.  It is here that Jesus said to Simon, “and upon this rock I will build my church” (Mt. 16: 13-20).  Near the foot of Mt. Hermon, we will walk along the Jordan River to the Springs of Banias and renew our baptismal vows.  We will have lunch and drive to the Sea of Galilee where we will board a boat reminiscent of those used during Jesus’ time.  Dinner and overnight at the Sea of Galilee. BD

DAY 6:  Saturday, March 3, 2012 - This morning we travel to Mt. Tabor, the traditional spot of the Transfiguration.  The Church of the Transfiguration incorporates two chapels; one of Moses and one of Elijah.  We continue to Beth Shean to see the best preserved Roman-Byzantine town in Israel.  Beth Shean was located on the old trade routes between Mesopotamia and the Mediterranean.  We return to our accommodations on the shores of the Sea of Galilee for dinner and overnight. BD

DAY 7:  Sunday, March 4, 2012 - The Judean Wilderness:  We drive down the Jordan Valley to Jericho, where we find the remains of the oldest city in the world.  We will travel by cable car to the Mount of Temptation to visit the Monastery of the Temptation where Jesus was tempted by Satan during his 40 day fast (Mt. 4: 1-11).  We stop for a hike to St. George’s Monastery, an ancient retreat literally built into the side of the mountain.  Then continue on to Qumran where the famous Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered.  We drive along the Dead Sea to Ein Gedi Kibbutz for dinner overnight. BD

DAY 8:  Monday, March 5, 2012 - Full day in the Dead Sea Area:  We start the day with a visit to Masada, the isolated mountain-top fortress about 440m above the banks of the Sea.  Masada was first fortified as early as the 1st or 2nd century BC and then enlarged by Herod the Great.  For those who wish, there will be the opportunity to hike back down Masada after the cable car ride to the top.  Then we are off to Ein Gedi for a walk to a spectacular oasis/waterfall where David hid from Saul.  Afterwards, there will be time for a dip in the Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth before returning to our accommodations on the Dead Sea for dinner and overnight. BD

DAY 9:  Tuesday, March 6, 2012 - In the footsteps of Jesus through Samaria:  Today we go to the Biblical lands of Samaria, passing by sites such as Nob, Gibeah, Ramah, Beeroth, Bethel, Shiloh.  We shall visit and drink from Jacob’s Well (Gen. 33:18), where Jesus asked the Samaritan woman for a drink promising her “living water” (John 4). We then proceed to ancient Sebaste, a Hellenistic city where John the Baptist, according to tradition, was beheaded at the birthday party of Herod Antipas (Mark 6:17).  We are hosted for a complimentary lunch by the village people of Sebastia.  We can also stop at Mt. Gerizim where the Samaritan community still live and have their synagogue.  Then to Jerusalem for dinner and overnight. BLD

DAY 10:  Wednesday, March 7, 2012 - Life’s Bread, Jerusalem and Bethlehem:  Through St. Stephen’s Gate to the Holy City, we study the model of ancient Jerusalem to orient ourselves to the city.  We walk to St. Anne’s Church, standing on a property facing the Temple Mount.  Once inside we find ourselves singing (the acoustics are glorious).  Nearby, we visit excavations which speak to us of Jesus’ healing at the “pool with the five porticos.”  We walk together to the Temple Mount Dig, to the Dome of the Rock, to the Western Wailing Wall and the Jewish Quarter.  We will visit the ancient excavated cisterns that were found under the Old City and explore the excavations of the Temple Mount Dig.  We will then depart for Bethlehem for lunch at a wonderful Arab restaurant called Two Moustaches.  After lunch, we will visit the Church of the Nativity and Shepherd’s Field and have some time for shopping before returning to Jerusalem for a visit to The House of Caiaphas, site of the imprisonment of Jesus prior to his crucifixion.  We will have dinner and overnight in Jerusalem. BLD

DAY 11:  Thursday, March 8, 2012 - The Passion:  Pater Noster; Palm Sunday Walk; Dominus Flevit; Church of the Agony; Garden of Gethsemane; Cave of the Olive Press.  We will walk along the Palm Sunday Path stopping to celebrate Eucharist in a private garden that is a part of Gethsemane.  From here we shall move on to walk the Via Dolorosa, winding through the busy markets of the Old City.  We shall end our walk at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, scene of the Crucifixion and site of the Tomb.  The rest of the day is free for further exploration in the Old City.  After dinner at our hotel in Jerusalem, we visit the Scottish Hospice where a consortium of Arab women sell their handmade wares. BD

DAY 12:  Friday, March 9, 2012 - Ein Kerem and New Jerusalem:  Today we visit Ein Kerem, just west of Jerusalem.  It is here that, according to Christian tradition, John the Baptist was born and lived.  We will visit the Church of St. John the Baptist which dates from the 17th century but is built over older Byzantine and Crusader structures.  We will also visit the Church of the Visitation which commemorates the Virgin Mary’s visit to Elizabeth, mother of John.  We finish our day with a visit to the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial, the Knesset, and the Israel Museum which houses the Shrine of the Book.  We will have a farewell dinner tonight and overnight Jerusalem. BD

DAY 13:  Saturday, March 10, 2012 - We will return to the US today spiritually fulfilled having walked in the footsteps of Jesus.  Breakfast and meals on the aircraft. BM

Price: Pricing $2,899.00.  Price is based on double occupancy without airline taxes and fuel surcharges.  Roundtrip air from Newark, NJ.  Air transportation available from other cities.  Single supplement:  $1,099.00

Pricing does not include airline taxes and fuel charges estimated to be $400+.  These will be added to your final invoice.

$300.00 per person deposit due with reservation.

Final payment due December 1, 2011

Cancellation Penalties
◊ Until November 30, 2011: $150 per person plus any unrecoverable fees.
◊ After December 1, 2011: NO REFUND

An application for travel insurance will be included with the receipt for your deposit.  We strongly recommend that you seriously consider this coverage.

Meals: B Breakfast, L Lunch, D Dinner, S Snack

The itinerary is subject to change due to local conditions or at the discretion and direction of the leader or guide.

Note that Israel is a physically demanding destination.  Good shoes and some preparing for the trip on the stair master are invaluable aids to a healthy and happy pilgrimage.