Words and Pictures from the Holy Land
Rev. David Stretton writes:

I was fortunate to spend three weeks in the Holy Land in 2008. Here is a selection of just five photographs from the trip. I've prepared some text to help us reflect on Jesus during this Holy Week
1.Lake Galilee

Luke 9:51 "He set his face resolutely towards Jerusalem".

Much of Jesus' ministry took place in the villages and towns situated around the Sea of Galilee. Jesus went from one to another - teaching, preaching, healing and sharing God's love. But he always knew that his destiny would be to leave this place and travel south to Jerusalem.

2. Temple Portico 

Matthew 22.15 "Then the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words".

During the last week of his life, Jesus spent a lot of time with his followers in the Temple. It was a large complex of buildings and precincts. Here you can see some of the porticos which were positioned on the outer edges of the Temple. Jesus would often sit here and teach. In his last week this was the scene of many conflicts with the religious authorities.

3. Gethsemane 

Matthew 26:39 "My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will".

It was in the garden, as he prayed, that Jesus made his final commitment to do his father's work. It was here that he was arrested and taken away to be tried.

4. Calvary

Luke 23:33 "When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him there, along with the criminals".

The Church of the Holy Sepulchre has been built over the top of the mound that is traditionally believed to be where Jesus was crucified. Today pilgrims can kneel in this place and put their hands upon the rock. The grandeur of the church is along way from the squalor of two thousand years ago.

5. In the Garden

John 20:16 "Jesus said to her, 'Mary'. She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, 'Rabonni!' (which means 'Teacher')"

What must it have been like to have walked through the garden to the tomb and to find it empty - and then turn to see Jesus?
He is Risen! He is Risen indeed! Alleluia!