Monday, May 27, 2013

What a Difference A Guide Makes

Methodists in Jerusalem

United Methodist Women in Jerusalem have been an added blessing to me.  

Tina Whitehead is in the center of this photo of Methodists taken at EAPPI  “handover service.  Tina offered to be my guide for a tour of the old city Jerusalem.  She has been a servant here for several years, she currently volunteers at Sabeel and Bethlehem Bible College.  

Stations of the Cross

We followed the Stations of the Cross, ending at the church that houses the Calvary stone, the table where Jesus was anointed for the grave and one of the sites that is believed to be the grave. 

This whole area had glass covered stones; said to be those that the cross was on.  One person at a time people kneel and climb under the table to feel the stone.  

Yes I did crawl under and feel the stone.

Wailing Wall

We stood on the women only side of the Wailing Wall.  My prayer was a praise that I did not need a special place to pray, but it was nice to stand in the sun and pray in the Son's name.

From Above Old Town

She knew the way to a roof and we stood up there and she pointed out all the various buildings.  Some you will recognize, the others you will need to come and see.  Tina will tell you what you are looking at.  Sorry I did not take better notes.

The Arch

There is a story associated with this arch, and it has been incorporated into the structure of this chapel.  Tina will tell you the story when you are on tour with her.

Land Confiscation

Land confiscation continues with Israeli citizens claiming properties.  This is one of the homes that has been confiscated by settlers.

The Garden Tomb

There is a garden tomb that has many possibilities of being the actual burial place including a stone formation that resembles a skull.

Do you see the skull?

Notice the trough the stone rolled in.

This garden is a great place to relax and contemplate God's plan for humanities salvation.

Middle East Meal

The tour ended with a Middle East meal!

That is not a cigar, it is part of our delicious meal. 

The food and company were excellent.

Thanks Tina!

The Cathedral of St. George the Martyr, Jerusalem

EAPPI Standing in Solidarity with Churches
The Cathedral of St. George the Martyr, Jerusalem

One of God's birds enjoyed the music too

I worshiped twice at St George the Martyr church.  I was going to meet Tina for the 11:00 service, but arrived early and followed the music into a wonderful worship service.  The sanctuary filled including many internationals.  The hymns, organ music and liturgy, much in English, all added to the stirring of the Spirit in my soul.

Below is a paragraph that spoke to my heart.  It was printed in the liturgy book and is from an address given to a gathering at the Cathedral, by Rt. Revd. Suheil Dawani, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem and the Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem.

“All Christians must come here first and foremost as pilgrims-and I note that you say you’re coming here to Jerusalem is a “pilgrimage.” Pilgrims here do not bring decisions with them.  They come here to seek prayerfully the decisions God wants them to make.  And God will always surprise us.  God has not finished with us or with our Church yet.  God the Holy Spirit will lead us into all truth, and we who come here as pilgrims must be open to the Spirit’s leading, open to God’s surprising revelation to us.”

Between Services the organ music was fantastic and enjoyed by all.

I found this posted on a bulletin board.

The second service had a guest speaker an English singer, Garth Hewitt from UK;  As part of his message he sang one of the songs he wrote for his Peace and Justice Concert Ministry, The Revolution of Love.  When the revolution of Love happens, there will be a Just Peace in the Middle East!

Praise God with me for allowing me to worship here, and for speaking to my heart in both services.  Pray for those Christians who are denied access to this their church because they are Palestinians.

Pray for a Revolution of Love!