Malagreca Middle East 13 days
Monday, January 21- Day 1 – DEPART - Today we depart JFK on our overnight flight to Tel Aviv. Tuesday, January 22 - Day 2 - TEL AVIV/CAESAREA/MT. CARMEL (HAIFA) – Upon arrival we meet our Tour Manager upon arrival in Ben Gurion airport. We journey along the Mediterranean and visit the Roman and Crusader remains at Caesarea. We travel to Mt. Carmel, where the first Carmelite community started. After a visit to the site of Elijah's confrontation with the priests of Baal, we enjoy a brief orientation tour of Haifa. We celebrate our Mass at the Stella Maris Carmelite church and visit Elijah’s cave, then transfer to our hotel. Our welcome dinner this evening is at a local restaurant in Haifa. Wednesday, January 23 - Day 3 - HAIFA/NAZARETH/ CANA/ TIBERIAS - This morning, we journey to Nazareth and walk through the local bazaars. We celebrate Mass at the Church of the Annunciation, where the Word became Flesh! We visit the Synagogue Church and the Church of St. Joseph. Just outside of Nazareth, we stop by Mount Precipice, the traditional site where angry Jewish worshippers attempted to throw Jesus off the cliff after his bold proclamation in the synagogue. We proceed to the village of Cana, the site of Jesus' first miracle, where our married couples renew their wedding vows. We conclude our day at the river Jordan to renew our baptismal vows. Afterwards we transfer to our hotel along the shores of the Galilee for dinner and overnight. Thursday, January 24 - St. Francis de Sales - Day 4 - TIBERIAS/MAGDALA /CAPERNAUM/TABGHA/MT. TABOR - By boat, we cross the Sea of Galilee and view the surrounding mountains and sites of Jesus' bountiful ministry. On the opposite side, we visit Magdala. We celebrate Mass here. We then continue on to Capernaum, where we see the remains of the village synagogue and the church built atop St. Peter's house. We drive to the Mount of Beatitudes, where we have time for personal meditation in the beautiful gardens. We continue to Tabgha and see the Benedictine Basilica of the Loaves and Fishes followed by the Franciscan Church of St. Peter's Primacy, where Jesus made His appearance after the resurrection. We pray at Mt Tabor, the site of the Transfiguration, before returning to our hotel for dinner and overnight. Friday, January 25 - Conversion of Paul - Day 5 -TIBERIAS/ BETHLEHEM/JERUSALEM - After breakfast, we journey to Bethlehem. Our first stop is the Church of Nativity commemorating the birth of Christ. We visit the Manger, The Church of St. Catherine, Crusader’s Cloister, Grotto of St Joseph, Grotto of St. Jerome and the Milk Grotto. We celebrate Christmas Mass at the Church of St. Catherine or one of the grottos. We enjoy a delightful luncheon with folkloric dancing (if possible) before we proceed to the Shepherd’s Field. After a visit to a Christian gift shop, we make our thrilling entry into Jerusalem. Transfer to our hotel for dinner and overnight. Saturday, January 26 - Day 6 - JERUSALEM - This morning, after visiting the place of the Ascension and the Church of the Pater Noster, we view the beautiful City of Jerusalem from Mt. of Olives. We walk down the hill to Dominus Flevit Chapel, where Jesus wept over Jerusalem and the Garden of Gethsemane, where we have time for personal prayer. We celebrate Mass at the Church of All Nations, then continue along the Kidron valley stopping at St Peter Gallicantu, (The Cock Crows) where Jesus was held in the house of High Priest Caiaphas. We drive to the New City passing the Knesset and Hebrew University. We view the Model City of Jerusalem in Jesus’ time, then proceed to Ein Karem, where John the Baptist was born. Lastly, we visit the Church of Visitation where Mary visited Elizabeth and said the words of the Magnificat. Dinner and overnight at our hotel. Sunday, January 27 - Day 7 - JERUSALEM - At 6:30 am this morning, we prayerfully walk the Stations of the Cross along the Via Dolorosa concluding at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Here we celebrate Mass at 7:30 am. After visiting the crucifixion site and the empty tomb, we return to the hotel for breakfast. Later this morning, we enter the Old City through Lion's Gate, where we visit the Church of St. Ann (Mary’s mother) and the Pool of Bethesda. We continue to Pilate’s Judgment Hall, the Chapel of Flagellation, Lithostrotos, Arch of Ecce Homo and the Convent of the Sisters of Zion. We continue to Mt. Zion to visit the tomb of King David, the Church of Dormition and pray in the Upper Room. Later this afternoon, we enter the Old City through Zion Gate making our way to the Western (Wailing) Wall. We spend some time at the different quarters of the Old City. Dinner and overnight at our hotel. Monday, January 28 - Day 8 - JERUSALEM/ DEAD SEA/ABU GOSH/AIRPORT - This morning we see Lazarus Tomb (condition permitting) and visit the Church of Martha and Mary. We celebrate our Holy Land closing Mass here. We continue to the Dead Sea beach, with optional swim in the clear yet salty waters of the Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth (swim lockers not included). Then to Jericho to view the Mount of Temptation and Sycamore Tree. We drive to the Church of the Resurrection in Abu Gosh, one of the traditional sites of Emmaus, where Jesus appeared on the road on the first Easter Sunday. We return to Jaffa, the city of Jonah, where Peter had his rooftop experience, and ride through the quaintly restored area. We celebrate our farewell dinner nearby before we head to Ben Gurion Airport for our overnight flight home. Tuesday, January 29 - Day 9 - USA - We arrive home today with unforgettable memories to cherish always. Knowing we have walked in the footsteps of Jesus and the early Christians bring new meaning to our Scripture reading and celebration of Mass.
Map Image: Malagreca Middle East 13 days