Today was our second full day in Galilee. Although I have visited all the sites before, in many ways it is like being here for the first time. This area of Israel, where Jesus spent most of his ministry, seems to have a mysterious and wonderful spiritual magnet connected to it, which draws in the souls of the pilgrims who come here from all over the world. We went to several places along the shore of Galilee -- where Jesus anointed Peter as the leader of the church, where he fed the 5,000 and where he taught in the Capernaum synagogue.
This morning I celebrated the Eucharist in the crypt of the Church of the Beatitudes, so named because it is built near where it is widely agreed that Jesus issued the Beatitudes at the beginning of the Sermon on the Mount. The power of the moment was generated in part by the holy place, but more by the community that was gathered. There are thirty-one of us; twenty-seven clergy from the Diocese of Newark plus four family members. Each of us, in different but similar ways, is being drawn more deeply into the story of Jesus -- and consequently more deeply into relationship with Jesus and each other.
Pictures and reflections of our journey written can be found on the pilgrimage blog: lentintheholyland.blogspot.com.