In February 2017 a group of 150 enthusiastic pilgrims from the Philippines, under the auspices of the Pilgrim center of Executive Resources and the leadership of Brother Bo Sanchez, arrived in the Holy Land. At the airport they were met by their guide and travelled directly to Nazareth, the childhood home of Jesus.
In Nazareth they visited the Basilica of Annunciation amongst other sites of interest before continuing on to Tiberias, on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, for a three night stay. Their stay in the Galilee area was filled with inspirational visits to many holy places including Capernaum where Jesus taught in the Synagogue and performed many miracles. They then travelled to Mount Tabor, site of the transfiguration of Jesus and visited the Church of the Transfiguration, before returning to take a boat ride crossing the Sea of Galilee, where Jesus miraculously walked on water.
The next day they proceeded to the Baptism site of Yardenit, on the Jordan River, where they had an exhilarating opportunity of renewing their baptismal vows. They then travelled to the Mount of Beatitudes where Jesus preached the Sermon on the Mount and visited places of interest in Tabgha.
An inspiring day was spent on the way to Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus, when the group visited Cana where Mass was celebrated at the Church of the First Miracle, and where married couples had the opportunity to renew their marriage vows. On arrival in Bethlehem, the group visited the Basilica of the Nativity as well as the modern Church of the Sanctuary of the Shepherds before travelling to Jerusalem, the City of Gold.
The group was inspired by the many sacred places they visited in the holy city of Jerusalem, amongst them, the Church of Dominus Flevit, the area of the Dome of the Rock which is the original site of the Temple where Jesus taught among the Scribes and Pharisees, the Garden of Gethsemane and a walk along the Via Dolorosa (the 14 stations of the Cross) to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
Before Travelling via Jericho to the Dead Sea, the exuberant group celebrated Holy Mass before joining Bro. Bo and the other Kerygma preachers as they celebrated the “Feast” in the morning at the Southern Steps in the Davidson Center. Passing through Jericho they viewed the Mount of Temptation where Jesus was led by the Spirit on a forty-day retreat after his baptism. Arriving at the Dead Sea which is the lowest spot on earth, they had the opportunity to experience floating in the extremely salty water, before their return trip to Jerusalem.
The Group’s last day was spent visiting the picturesque hillside village of Ein Karem followed by a visit to Genesis Land to experience life as it was in biblical times. After a thanksgiving Mass they transferred to Ben Gurion airport for their return home.