Why Go This Year?
Patricia Paddey, a senior writer at Faith Today, joined her peers from a number of
other Canadian Christian periodicals to visit the Holy Land together March 4-10,
2013. Here are their fresh reports.
The Place of God’s Own Choosing
There is a special power in story. Maybe
that’s why God chose to reveal Himself to
us through words. Maybe that’s why the
Word Incarnate was a storyteller. But stories told about far off places and times take
on a new potency when the story’s setting
surrounds you. When you sail on the Sea of
Galilee and remember that Jesus stilled those
very waters with a word. When you visit
Jerusalem and your guide says, “Daniel was
born here.” Here. You realize that history took
place in this place. It’s the place of God’s own
choosing. It’s the land where our faith began.
And when I saw it, when I lived and breathed
and walked there, my understanding of the
story to end all stories was deepened. And my
faith was enriched.
–Patricia Paddey, senior writer, Faith Today
Fused Beliefs to a Place
A trip to the Holy Land was not on my bucket
list; faith does not require a Christian to make
such a pilgrimage. But when the opportunity
arose I took it, and now I am grateful. It fused
what I believe to a place and brought the Old
and New Testaments not only alive, but integrated them as happening in the same space,
creating all sorts of wonderful connections. It
was awesome. I’d go again.
–Marion Hollinger, editor-in-chief, Tapestry
(Lutheran Women’s Missionary League)
Geography of Revelation
Being there, touching the soil, walking the
paths and streets, and experiencing the sites
put my faith into a geographical context and
helped change “Bible stories” into “Bible fact”
in a concrete way. As Father Pierre Batista Piz-
zaballa, the head of the Franciscan Custody
in the Holy Land, explained during our visit,
“The Christian faith is not just an idea but
first and foremost history. If there is a history
of revelation, then there is a geography of
–Ian Adnams, former editor,
The Canadian Lutheran
Enriched Work and Spiritual Life
As a Christian writer and editor, I constantly
reflect on stories of the Old and New Testaments and how they impact our lives as followers of God. Experiencing Israel first hand,
the land where these stories unfolded, has
brought a new level of meaning and significance not only to my work, but to my spiritual
life as well.
–Pamela Richardson, news editor,
copy editor and production
co-ordinator, The Salvation Army
The Most Spiritual and Endearing Place
It is now obvious to me that God knew what
He was doing when He chose the mosaic of
Israel as His canvas for the Alpha and Omega.
In my experience, this is the most spiritual and
endearing place on earth. I am blessed with a
powerful photographic image of this pilgrimage: a Hebrew man walking down a long path
from the Mount of Beatitudes to the Sea of
Galilee. This image captures creation, without
the bricks and mortar of man. No buildings,
towers or stained glass windows. No holy
men with incense. No politics, tolls or guards
blocking the path with commercial license to
eternity. This is a path of promise for all people,
simple, free and clear. This, is my Israel.
–Brian Philip Koldyk, publisher,
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Where God Became Man
Visiting the Holy Land drives home for us the
mystery of the Incarnation. As we walk where
Jesus walked, we remember that our God is
not a God who stays up in heaven, disconnected from the world He has created. Instead,
He comes down in grace and meets with real
people – real sinners – where they are. To see
the place where God became Man, where “the
Word became flesh and dwelt among us,” to
see the place where He died on the cross for our
sins and the tomb from which He rose again
three days later, these are precious experiences.
–Mathew Block, editor,
The Canadian Lutheran
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