Saturday, August 7, 2010

The past two days, we have been in the Old City.  We walked the Way of the Cross.  We went with the Franciscans on their way through the Holy Sepulcher.  Then today we walked through the Armenian & Jewish Quarter, stopping at the Western Wall and walked a small portion of the Outer Wall.  Then when we were leaving the Dormition German Abbey, one of the caretakers asked if we were staying for Mass?  I didn't know that they had Mass at 12:00, only that they closed then.  So we stayed, but they had Noon Prayer instead.  It was a small group of Monks, but it was very beautiful.  It was all in German.  Afterwards, I spoke to a Monk and said I had gone to St. Meinrad.  He seemed to brighten up and when he asked my name, Kreilein, he was really smiling to hear a German name in Jerusalem.  Later that afternoon at 3:00 PM, the only time St. James Cathedral is open, we went for their midafternoon prayer.  So it was a full day.  Tomorrow, we leave for the Sea of Galillee Area.  The place where we will stay only has internet in the lobby, so I'll see if I can get on to post a blog.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Today the three of us went to Bethlehem.  First we went to the Shepherd's Field where the angel announced the Birth of Christ. Then on to the Milk Grotto where Joseph had an angel speak in a dream to go to Egypt and hid from Herod.  After seeing the new church building at the Milk Grotto, we went to the Manger Square for the Birth Site.  The Armenians were still having Mass so we went to the Catholic section and they were busy.  By the time we looked around and made it back, the Armenians were finished.  Then after a few minutes we were able to go into the grotto where the birthplace and manger are.  There are many pictures and icons around the walls and then we went back to the Catholic section to see where St. Jerome translated the Bible from many different languages into the one language of the people, Latin.  Also saw the Holy Innocent's Chapel and the graves of St. Jerome and his helpers. Then we went to the outdoor market place for the locals.  It was crazy as ever.  Then we went back to the apartment for awhile and went to see the places of the Visitation and Birth of St. John the Baptist.  The pictures are of angels in  the Upper Church of the Visitation.  

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Today I went to the Ben Gurion airport to pick up Tom & Sharral Jensen from Wisconsin. Their flight was 30 minutes early and as procedure I waited in the greeting area for them.  They didn't show up and didn't show up. I thought either I had missed them or they missed a flight or something.  The reason they came out late was the their luggage didn't arrive. They filled out some paper work before they came out of the luggage area for delayed luggage.  Since they didn't have my address, they had to go back and add some more information to it.  Finally, convinced that the luggage would not arrive in a short time, we boarded a sherut (shared taxi).  We ended up with a wildman at the wheel.  He even pawned us off on a regular taxi that took us to the apartment. He paid for the cab himself.  He really was in a hurry to get back to the airport for another pickup. We didn't get back until after 6:00 PM.  Tomorrow we have plans to go to Jerusalem.  Hopefully, the luggage will show up and there won't be any unexpected occurences.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Since it was Tuesday, I decided to go to St. Onuphrius' Monastery.  They are open on Tuesdays & Thursdays.  Wrong.  They were closed.  I'll try again.  Maybe next time in the afternoon.  This Monastery is built around the Potter's Field or where Judas hung himself.  I have seen it from a distance and from the front door two times. Now next time, I might be able to enter.  Then I walked back through the valley and went up to Mt. Zion.  On the way, I remembered that Oscar Schindler was buried in that area. He is the man from movie fame & also saved 1,200 of  his Jewish workers from execution. So I went to the Catholic / Christian cemetery on Mt Zion and found his grave.  It's pretty obvious because of all the rocks & stones on the grave.  That's the Jewish custom of visiting a grave, instead of our custom of placing flowers.  There is an international art & crafts festival in town, so I stopped by there also.  Had a great day.  The pictures are of the Monasery's sign and Schindler's grave.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Today was a work day for me.  I reviewed my Scripture project.  Made some changes and finalized both the video and reflection part. Backed up all my work on different flash drives. Also, thought of how to package the program.  I have a few different ideas.  But will have to wait until I get home to finalize those areas.  Hopefully at the first Spiritual Life Meeting when I get back, I'll preview the program.  This really took up most of the day.  I did go to a Coffee Shop down the Street.  That's really the name of the cafe.  I keep forgetting about the Jewish Eating Rules.  If you have dairy products, you can't have any meat.  If you have meat, you can't have any dairy.  You really can't mix much of anything. All clothes have to be of the same fabric.  In other words, no blends like cotton & polyester.  Anyways, the Cafe has meals such as salads, fish, deserts, eggs, deserts.  The food was very good & I'll be back.  I'm going to start on a student's version of my program right now.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Today I went to what the Jews call the Temple Mount because the temple was located on top of this base.  But now the Moslems have their Dome of the Rock.  The Dome is a shrine built over the rock on which Abraham was preparing to kill his son Isaac as a sacrifice to God.  This also the place where they say Mohhamed was taken up into heaven.  So this site is sacred to Christians, Jews & Moslems.  Also there is one of the largest Mosques next to the Shrine.  The temple area had to be huge if it had all this space.  Non-Moslems are not allowed in the Shrine becasue Ariel Sharon ( a former Prime Minister of Israel) stormed into it during prayer time.  So they have limited times that we can visit.  It was worth it to go and visit the site.  Here are a few pictures of the Dome and the area around it.