What is this website about?

Roman Era Aqueduct
Roman Era Aqueduct

Ever since the beginning of Christianity, pilgrims have been going to the Holy Land to visit the Living Stones, and as living stones themselves. (I Peter 2:4-5) But “pilgrims” conjures up a very pious trip. Too many guide books have been written with that in mind, so when I went to Jerusalem, I could not find a book that spoke to me. I first proposed a book for Protestants but my Catholic priest friends urged me to include them as well. And more recently I have been urged to make this a website.

The Christians of the Holy Land want you to come and visit. They want to meet you and talk about their faith and lives.(See the article on INdigenous Christians in the section called Christianity Then and Now.) They want to share the sites where Jesus walked and help you learn about the Christian Church, which was born there and spread around the world. They want you to see what is happening to them now, as they feel forgotten by Christians in other countries. 

A Large Variety of things to see imageThe original purpose of this website was to write a personal guide for American Christians to help them as they visited the Christian Holy Land.  Disturbances in the area means that there are fewer tourists and pilgrims, so the website has been expanded to help those who want to learn more about the land where Jesus lived, even if they cannot visit.  As the need to preserve the Holy Land for Christians has expanded, a section on advocacy has been added. 

In the past, this land, which was named Palestine, held Muslims, Christians, and Jews struggling for dominance. But all were calling it a Holy Land. Since the British Mandate, the formation of the new country called “Israel” and its occupation of parts of the west bank of the Jordan River, the Jews have dominated politically. You are visiting because you are a Christian and this website is to help you learn about your Christian Holy Land. As you consider this area, remember that Palestine is a territory (since 138 C.E.) and Israel is a country founded since World War II and recognized by the United Nations in the 1940s.

Jewish poster from 1936 issued by the Tourism Development Association of Palestine
Jewish poster from 1936
issued by the Tourism
Development Association
of Palestine

This is not a theological website, liberal or conservative, or anything in between. The purpose of this particular website is to help American Christians visit the Christian Holy Land and appreciate what is there for them. It is a practical guide for ministers and lay people who visit today in the 21st century.  In the past we used the terms, "BC" and "AD", but now we use "BCE" for "before Common era" and "CE" to mean "Common Era".

We have four gospels in our Bibles. In 1992 Father Bargel Pixner of Jerusalem wrote With Jesus Through Galilee: According to the Fifth Gospel. His idea was that geography is the Fifth Gospel and it caught people’s imagination. Recently, the Christians of the land have added the idea that the persons living in the Holy Land are the Sixth Gospel. All six gospels have something to teach us.

Not everybody can go on such a long trip but this website can serve as a way to take a virtual visit.  It can also help you to work on keeping Christianity in the land where Jesus lived, despite today's turbulance in the Middle East.  If you want to do advocacy on this issue, go to the section "Never Say Good-Bye" and click on "Advocacy". 

The website has three major sections: One is on Jesus and how to walk with Jesus in the land where he spent his earthly life. The next section is about the Church which developed in the same land and fanned out all over the world. Reminders of the original Church are still there and many diverse forms of Christianity have come back to the Mother Church. A final section is designed to help Christians advocate for their Holy Land.  It is a practical guide for ministers and lay people in the 21st century.

Come with ME to the Christian Holy Land and learn to love it as I do.

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