Shelagh Huston and David Soy presented a slideshow and talk on their recent trip to Jerusalem and the Holy Land. This was held at The Roxy Feb 11th 2011 in the afternoon and attracted a number of newcomers. Twenty five people came to hear this excellent talk which brought the ‘Bible Story’ to life for all of us. Imelda Cuthbertson and Susan Murray were the coordinators
Shelagh and David treated us all to a very spiritual and faith based presentation of their pilgrimage to Israel last year. David concentrated on the historical Israel, the crossroads of the ancient civilizations, and filled out the importance of a number of archaeological sites like Masada for the Jews, Caesarea for the Romans as well as Meggido. They found it common to find ancient remains such as Roman columns or Egyptian hieroglyphs on stones just beside to road or to see Crusader castles in the area. Then we turned to the present and views of the Golan Heights area and the walls encompassing the Palestinians – both areas being strictly ‘off limits’. The ‘wonder’ with which the ancients viewed the ‘promised land’ was certainly brought to life by the narration and we were filled with amazement as we saw the inhospitable landscape and wondered how communities could thrive like that at Qumran, where the Dead Sea scrolls were discovered.
Shelagh attached the areas to their relevant scriptural places and though the present day Nazareth and many of the ‘holy’ sites in Jerusalem bear no resemblance to what they were like 2000 years ago, yet she managed to find present days pictures which served as excellent reminders of that time…..boys riding their donkeys as Jesus most probably had, a narrow desolate path on which a traveler could easily be robbed and hopefully helped by another good Samaritan, the beauty yet starkness of the Sea of Galilee on which Peter and the others fished or retreated to in their time of uncertainty after Christ’s death, the wilderness into which Jesus went to pray and the type of place where he was tempted, the fertile valley below Megiddo – the place of Armageddon, and of course the sacred places in Jerusalem where the Passion took place. I for one had a sense of awe when we were done at how out of such a place and time Jesus was born, grew, preached and died and here 2000 years later, we like the thousands who climbed the steep and narrow paths at Qumran using set handholds, still have Jesus as our rock and anchor as He has placed for us His ‘handhold’ markers which guide and nourish us each day of our lives. Thank you Shelagh and David.