Tuesday, January 29, 2019

We've Arrived!

Bishop Karen:

One hundred pilgrims from the Mountain Sky Conference (as well as several more from other conferences) left their respective cities on Monday and arrived in Tel Aviv on Tuesday, late afternoon. We all converged at almost the same time and were led to our buses, to be driven to Tiberius on the Sea of Galilee. We were greeted at the hotel with fresh juices and dates, and then ushered into the dining area, where we feasted on all sorts of Mediterranean delights!

Because of the size of our group, we are on two buses. One bus has last year's tour guide, Rula. The other bus has Abraham as tour guide. Like Rula, Abraham is a Palestinian Christian. Abraham has quite the sense of humor: "Just remember when we visit places, to come with Papa."

I was very moved by how Abraham talked about our trip as we make our way to Tiberius. We are not tourists. We are here as pilgrims. And then he led us in saying the Lord's Prayer. It was a beautiful reminder of the oneness we experience in Christ. We might come from many places, but we are united as Christ's body.

Tonight we all plan on getting a good night's rest: tomorrow will be a full day!

Rev. Tiffany Keith, The Edge and 1st UMC, Colorado Springs, CO and Congregational Resource Minister for Peaks/Pikes Peak District:

The Paradox of Time 

We just landed. The journey across the US, across an ocean, and across Europe happened so fast and yet every moment seemed to drag on forever and ever. 

The Paradox of Time 

We just landed. We just landed in this place that is the past. This place that is the present. This place that is the future. 

This place is the past. It’s Canaanite. And Roman. And Palestinian. And Israeli. And Christian. It’s the place that connect Europe, Africa, and Asia. All the people of the past have left their mark on the land and on the people. You walk here and feel the deep, long history of the land. 

This place is the present. We are in a bus with air conditioning, USB plugs, and Wifi we just got the password for. We’re passing gas stations, cities, walls, deep division, oppression, and dehumanizing. You can’t help but experience the presence. 

This place is the future. It is here I can see all peoples flowing into the tree of life. Knowing the absolute love of God. 

Here's a look at tonight's dinner buffet:

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