From the Pastor’s Desk – February 02, 2020

Jesus called the disciples by name, called them to come and follow him. Remarkably, Peter and Andrew, James and John followed him immediately, abandoning their nets for a time until he invited them to fish again. Then he told them they would be fishing for men and we could add – women. We are all disciples and we are all called by name to follow Christ.

How would you like to visit the Holy Land, go on pilgrimage to walk where Jesus walked, to see where he lived at times, and see the land we hear about every Sunday, every day in the Scriptures? Next year, in late January or early February 2021, under the auspices of George’s International Tours, San Diego, CA I am planning to lead a pilgrimage for interested people from Saint Anthony Parish and Saint Catherine’s parishes. The specific dates and itinerary are being worked out.

Typically, pilgrims visit many of these sites, not necessarily in this order, Bethlehem and the Church of the Nativity, Shepherd’s Fields, Museum of the Book, and see a model of the old city of Jerusalem. We visit the Mt. of Olives, walk the Palm Sunday road to the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations. We can visit the Pool of Bethesda and walk the Via Dolorosa. There is the excavated Cardo, once the main street of the ancient city of Jerusalem and the Franciscan chapel of the Cenacle and the re-creation of the Upper Room.

A highlight is the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, where we might be able to celebrate Mass at the tomb of Jesus and visit the rock of Calvary. Eventually we make our way to the traditional site of Jesus’ Baptism at the Jordan river and then travel by bus to the Sea of Galilee. We can include a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, visit Capernaum and several other sites along the shore of the Sea along with the Mount of the Beatitudes. There are many more sites we will visit in the Holy Land. We walk to all the sites from our bus, so anyone with difficulty walking may find this trip daunting. Unfortunately, the buses and holy sites can’t accommodate wheelchairs.

The pilgrimage may be approximately 12 days, flying out of San Francisco to Tel Aviv and back. The trip price includes all transportation, air and bus, hotels and two meals a day. It requires a current passport and price will be determined when air fares become available. However, I need to get an indication of who would be interested in going. If you are interested, please send me your name, email address and contact phone numbers by February 17th to Space is limited to 30-35 people.

Father Larry

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