[Mom – September 23, 2019 – What a special day today was as we walked the 14 Stations of the Cross. All stations were moving, but Bill getting down to feel where the cross was put in the ground and Jesus’s tomb where we thanked Jesus for going to the cross for us were especially touching. (We waited in line 1 1/2 hours to go into the sepulcher.) Shane lightened the day for us when the priest would not let him go in because he was in shorts so he fashioned a skirt out of my scarf to cover his knees. We did not think he looked anymore proper, but it meet the criteria so off we went. Later we walked along the streets of Old Town Jerusalem and walked up on the rooftop and looked down on the city.
We knew Missouri State was a great school but never expected to see a girl wearing a MO State t-shirt walking along the street in Jeresulem. Shane ended his day with some time in the hot tub at the apartment where we are staying.]
Even though we stretched out our time in Israel and Jordan to three weeks to see as much as we could, it was this day specifically as the reason I wanted to bring my parents here in the first place. This was our first full day in Jerusalem and I could not think of anything better to start it off with then following in the footsteps of Jesus as he is crucified and rose from the dead. This is the whole being of Christianity after all.
I wanted to take them into the Old Town via Damascus Gate for their first time because this is the most ornate, historical, and local of all the city gates in my opinion. It is visually impressive and as soon as you enter the gate you are in the midst of locals selling wares, food, and goods to other locals. It is good to see so you realize this is still an active living city even if it is 6500 years old.
We walked towards Lion Gate (and out of it to see the gate) in order to start walking the Via Dolorosa and the 14 stations of the cross. The stations start with the trial of Jesus and ends at his tomb within the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. It was quite moving especially once we enter the church and I showed them where the cross sat on Calvary and Jesus’s tomb. As mom said it took an hour and a half before we got to enter the tomb and once inside you get about 15 seconds, but I think everyone would say it is worth it!!!!
Just so you know when you enter through the main door the stairs almost immediately to the right lead up to Calvary while the tomb is around the corner to the left. The tomb has been turned into a small chapel which sits under the rotunda of the church (cover photo).
Once we did all that my dad was worn out, so I took him back before meeting back up with mom and her friend. Once back together we wandered through the old city (mostly in the Christian and Jewish quarters) and I took them up to the rooftops which was a unique perspective. My mom wanted to know where we were headed and I told her wherever the road takes us. 🙂 It was relaxing and a great way to see the city!!!!!