Sunday, January 09, 2011

Bethlehem & Herodion (Herodium)

We woke for worship in Bethlehem - and spent the morning in worship with Orthodox and Catholic Christians in the Church of the Nativity.

We drove out from Bethlehem to Shepherd's Fields - "And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people." (Luke 2:8-10)

Then, up to the Herodion - one of my favorite spots - for it's great views and the magnanimity of Herod's construction campaigns!  Great pics of several travel participants with the Judean Hills in the background!

We had time to return to Bethlehem, since we are lodging here - and in the late afternoon a friend and I, Paul Metcalfe, had opportunity to enter the grotto that commemorates the place where Mary gave birth to Jesus.  We had the place to ourselves. In the morning it was filled with, literally, hundreds of tourists, pilgrims and others.  Tonight - we had it to ourselves for moments of reflection. 

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