I woke up early this morning to catch a service at Church of the Holy Sepulchre (Location of the crucifixion and empty tomb). The church is divided among denominations, but it is the only church where Eastern and Western churches worship together. The service I attended was a Franciscan order of the Roman Catholic church. Although it was in Latin, and much different than what I am used to, I am glad I went. The hour-long service consisted of singing, liturgy, and walking around the tomb. The service was led by the clergy, who carried a silver cross, incense and liturgy books. After, I went to Christ Church, as I usually do on free Sundays.
By far, the best part of the day was definitely parading down the Mount of Olives to Jerusalem! This parade was in remembrance of Jesus' journey to Jerusalem. It was certainly an unforgettable experience. As I looked around me I saw people from all around the world. So much diversity in one place! And it is amazing that we can all come together united, even by the thousands! So many different languages and songs! After I made it to the city gate I went back out to watch the rest of the parade. I loved seeing the joy people had as they celebrated. And although I could hardly understand the songs and conversations, it is experiences like this that reveal how similar we are. All together to remember.
|Holy Sepulchre Service|
|Start of the parade!|
|Boy Scouts (yes they are in Israel too)|
|Laura and I|
|Liz and I|
|Entering Old City gate|
|Overlooking the parade|
|Parade with the Mt. of Olives in the back right|
P.S. I have some videos and will upload them soon!