A Holy Land Pilgrimage as organized and sponsored by the Crossroads Initiative, is a truly unique experience. It is indeed a sacred pilgrimage, learning experience, and vacation all wrapped into one! A spiritual journey leading to spiritual breakthrough can also be fun and fascinating at the same time. The next adventure begins on December 27, 2015 and concludes on January 6, 2016, but it really doesn't end. Your return will mark a new beginning -- you will never read the Bible or participate in the Eucharist in the same way ever again. Here are some of the details of this one in a lifetime trip led by Catholic Theologian, historian, and biblical scholar, Dr. Marcellino D'Ambrosio (aka "Dr. Italy").
Day 1: BEGINNING OUR PILGRIMAGEDepart New York or Newark via jet service. Dinner and breakfast will be served on board.
Day 2: INTO THE LAND OF THE BIBLE Upon arrival in the afternoon, a luxury motor coach will transfer you to the site of our first Mass together -- spot where the Ark of the Covenant rested before being brought by King David into Jerusalem.Proceed to our hotel in Jerusalem for check-in and dinner.
Day 3: JERUSALEM
Visit the Church of St. Ann, built on the site of the birthplace of Our Lady.Continue to the Pool of Bethesda, where Christ healed the paralytic. Visit the Western Wall of the Temple (“The Wailing Wall) which is the most sacred spot in the world for Jews.In the afternoon proceed to the National Museum, the Shrine of the Book. Continue to Mount Zion, visiting the room of the Last Supper and the Church of the Dormition.Next stop is the Church of St. Peter in Gallicantu built on the site of the house of Caiaphas.Visit the dungeon where Christ was kept on Holy Thursday night and the high priest’s courtyard where Peter denied Christ thrice.
Day 4: MOUNTAINS OF JERUSALEM Drive to the Mount of Olives and visit the Church of the Ascension and then Dominus Flevit, the spot where Christ wept over Jerusalem and onwards to Gethsemane to view the ancient Olive trees in the Garden of Gethsemane and to visit the Church of All Nations which houses the Rock of the Agony of Christ on Holy Thursday. Visit the Cave of the betrayal of Jesus and the Tomb of Our Lady. In the afternoon, visit Ein Karem, the place of the Visitation where Our Lady came to visit her cousin Elizabeth. View the plaques with the Magnificat in most languages of the World. Return to your hotel.
Day 5: JERUSALEM AND BETHLEHEM Drive to Bethlehem where we will have the chance to see the beautiful olive wood and mother of pearl handiwork of the local Christian craftsmen.Visit the Basilica of the Nativity, built over the site of the birthplace of Christ. Visit the Cave where Christ was born and where our rosaries and crosses will be blessed by being touched to the spot where he was born.See the Chapel of St. Jerome, who lived here for many years and translated the Bible into Latin. Continue to the Shepherds fields and sing Christmas carols while recalling the "great throng of the heavenly hosts" who appeared to the Shepherds.Return to the hotel.
Day 6: OLD CITY OF JERUSALEM Tour the Old City of Jerusalem, visiting the Chapel of Flagellation, the chapel of Condemnation and the Lithostrotos, the site of the Antonia Fortress where Christ was condemned to death by Pilate. Beginning the way of the Cross here, we will carry the cross along the Via Dolorosa - ending at the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre, built over the site of the Crucifixion and the Tomb. Visit Calvary and the Tomb of Our Lord followed by a short tour of the Basilica.Return to your hotel.
Day 7: THE WILDERNESS OF JUDEAAfter breakfast, visit the Temple area which was the scene of many episodes from the life of Christ, such as the expulsion of the money changers. Here now stands the Dome of the Rock, the third holiest spot in the world for the Moslem faith. Proceed through the Judean Wilderness to Jericho. Visit Elisha’s Fountain and the ancient city of Jericho from which you can view the Mount of Temptation, where Jesus fasted for forty days and forty nights. Continue to Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered in 1947.We will then visit a beach club on the Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth, where you can float in the super-buoyant water if you wish.Return to your hotel for your final night in Jerusalem.
Day 8: JERUSALEM TO GALILEEThis morning drive north from Jerusalem to Galilee. Ascend to the top of Mt. Tabor, the site of the Transfiguration.Proceed to Nazareth where you will visit the Basilica of the Annunciation where the Angel Gabriel appeared to the Virgin Mary to announce that she was to become the mother of God. Visit the home of the Holy Family, St. Joseph’s workshop, Mary’s Well and the Synagogue where Jesus preached. Drive to Cana, where Christ performed his first miracle and where any married couples can renew their marriage vows. Proceed to your hotel on the shore of the Sea of Galilee.
Day 9: THE SEA OF GALILEE AND UPPER GALILEE In the morning, we cross the Sea of Galilee by boat from Tiberias to Capernaum, now in ruins but once a thriving town where Peter lived and where much of the public ministry of Christ took place. See the Church of the Primacy of Peter, where Christ confirmed Peter as Head of the Church and we visit the Mount of Beatitudes, where Christ taught the Eight Beatitudes to his Disciples. Proceed to Tabgha, the place of the Multiplication of Loaves and Fish. Continue to the ruins of Magdala where Mary Magdalene lived. Return to the River Jordan where we will renew our baptismal vows together. Return to your hotel.
Day 10: CARMEL AND CAESAREA:Morning departure from Tiberias to continue to Haifa, visiting Mount Carmel and the Shrine of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel and the Cave of the Prophet, Elijah. Proceed along the shores of the Mediterranean to CaesareaMaritima on the Plains of Sharon to visit the ruins of the Crusaders' city, surrounded by a moat and a city wall enclosing the ruins of the Roman city. Visit the Roman Theater. Proceed to our hotel on the seacoast where you will have the chance to rest, shower, and prepare for our farewell dinner and departure to the airport for our return flight to the USA.
Day 11: Return to the USA!
***Mass will be celebrated daily***
$3799 per person (plus tips, taxes and fuel surcharges)
$3099 Land Only Package per person (plus tips)
Single supplement for our Holy Land Pilgrimage is $775 - and is VERY limited - if you are traveling alone and wish to be in your own room reserve early!