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Auckland Diocese Holy Land Pilgrimage

Diocese of Auckland - Pilgrimage to the Holy Land accompanied by Monsignor Bernard Kiely VG (Chaplain) & Dame Lyndsay Freer.

14 Nights / 18 Days. 14 September – 1 October 2019
Itinerary:
14 Nights / 18 Days Petra exploration (2 Nights) / Mt Nebo / Dead Sea (2) / Bethlehem / Mt Carmel / Haifa / Nazareth / Cana / Sea of Galilee (4) / Mt Tabor / Jerusalem (6) / Masada / Jericho.
 
Pilgrimage to the Holy Land

 
MEAL CODE: B: Breakfast   L: Lunch   D: Dinner
Day 1: SATURDAY 14TH SEPTEMBER 2019 - DEPART NEW ZEALAND FOR JORDAN

Day 2: SUNDAY 15TH SEPTEMBER - ARRIVE AMMAN TO PETRA (D)
This morning we will fly into Amman, be greeted by our guide and travel south to the magnificent ancient trading city of Petra, known as the ‘Red Rose City’ and one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. Here we are positioned in the biblical land of Moab.
Petra overnight

Day 3: MONDAY 16TH SEPTEMBER – PETRA EXPLORATION (BD)
Enjoy an unforgettable guided walking tour of the ruins of ancient Petra – the city that the Nabateans carved out of solid rock dating back to 300 BC! Our visit will follow a passage through the Siq, a chasm created in a prehistoric earthquake. It is one of the special moments to walk through this canyon which dramatically opens up to reveal the Treasury Building (Al Khasne) - a never to be forgotten experience. We will see also the Roman Theatre, Corinthian tomb along with churches, homes and many other buildings from this fascinating period.
Petra overnight

Day 4: TUESDAY 17TH SEPTEMBER - VIA MADABA TO THE DEAD SEA (BD)
After breakfast we visit St George’s Church in Madaba with its precious 6th century mosaic map of the Holy Land. Enjoy some free time to explore the fascinating township of Madaba, the ‘City of Mosaics’, taking the opportunity for lunch and to browse the local crafts. Whilst in Madaba we will also visit the Church of the Beheading of St John the Baptist. Onwards to Biblical Mt Nebo where we will celebrate Mass. Here, at the site where, Moses looked over into the Promised Land and blessed Joshua who was to lead the Israelites under God’s protection. This afternoon we arrive at the Jordanian side of the Dead Sea to check-in to our beautiful hotel located down on the shore.
Dead Sea overnight

Day 5: WEDNESDAY 18TH SEPTEMBER - DEAD SEA / MT NEBO / BETHANY BEYOND THE JORDAN (BD)
Visit Bethany Beyond the Jordan, one of the most recent archaeological and religious discoveries. This area is believed to be the Baptismal site of Jesus by John the Baptist. Here we will celebrate Mass and renew our Baptismal vows. We then return to our hotel for the remainder of the day at leisure. We can unwind and take the optional opportunity to float in the salty waters of the Dead Sea said to have healing qualities. The experience is quite uplifting! Dead Sea overnight.
Dead Sea overnight

Day 6: THURSDAY 19TH SEPTEMBER – VIA BEIT SHE’AN TO THE SEA OF GALILEE (BD)
We cross the border into the Holy Land of Israel known as the land of the “fifth Gospel”. Soon we come to Jericho the ‘City of Palms’ which is said to be the world’s oldest inhabited city. On arrival we proceed to the Sanctuary of the Good Shepherd and celebrate Mass. Across the valley we view the Mt of Temptation, the site of Jesus’ fast of 40 days. Journey north through the lush Jordan valley to Beit She’an, located in the north of the Jordan Valley and the place where King Saul’s body was displayed on its walls after his defeat by the Philistines. See the second century Roman Theatre, the best preserved in Israel and the Tell el-Husn, one of the most important archaeological sites in the country dating back to 1318 BC. Continue north to Tiberias on the shores of Lake Galilee.
Sea of Galilee overnight

Day 7: FRIDAY 20TH SEPTEMBER – SEA OF GALILEE (BLD)
Our memorable Galilee day begins with a brief visit to Magdala, the town of Mary Magdalene before we journey to Capernaum, the centre of Jesus’ teaching and home to Peter the apostle. We travel to the Nof Ginosar Kibbutz where the remains of a first century fishing boat is preserved as in the days of Christ. We then set off in a traditional sailing vessel to encounter one of our most memorable pilgrimage highlights – a private Mass floating on Lake Galilee. Here we recall the miracles of Jesus calming the storm and appearing to the apostles walking on this very water. After the Mass, we will continue back to the shore for our special ‘St Peter’s fish’ lunch. This afternoon we visit Tabgha and enter the Church of the Multiplication of the Loaves and Fishes. Nearby is the Church of the Primacy of Peter where Jesus challenged Peter and each one of us ‘Do you really love me, feed my sheep’.
Sea of Galilee overnight

Day 8: SATURDAY 21ST SEPTEMBER - NAZARETH ENCOUNTER (BLD)
Today we travel east to Nazareth, the town of Jesus’ childhood. Firstly visit the International Mary of Nazareth Centre. Ecumenical in its approach, it uses multimedia techniques to show the place of the Mother of Jesus in Christian, Jewish and Muslim traditions. Continue on to the nearby Nazareth Village, a recreation of the village life of Nazareth as in the days of Jesus. Here enjoy a traditional meal and take a parable walk back in time along the path that brings to life the environment and atmosphere which shaped Jesus’ early years and ministry. Back in Nazareth township, we will visit the Basilica of the Annunciation where a traditional cave becomes the focal point of Mary’s response “Let it be done to me according to thy word”. Also see the Church of St Joseph, Mary’s Well and the Synagogue Church believed to be on the site of the synagogue in which Jesus preached. Return to our hotel in time for dinner.
Sea of Galilee overnight

Day 9: SUNDAY 22ND SEPTEMBER - MT OF BEATITUDES & MT TABOR (BD)
Our day begins with Mass at the Mount of Beatitudes as we take time in this special place to ponder Jesus’ message of happiness. From here we continue to nearby Korazim to relive the parables of the House built on the rock and the persevering widow. Travel out this afternoon to the foot of Mt Tabor before ascending by taxis up the narrow winding road leading to the majestic summit. Here Our Lord’s divinity shone forth in the Transfiguration. After spending time in this breathtaking setting we will better understand Peter’s words ‘Lord it is good for us to be here’. Remainder of the afternoon at leisure.
Sea of Galilee overnight

Day 10: MONDAY 23RD SEPTEMBER - VIA HAIFA & CAESAREA MARITIMA TO JERUSALEM (BLD)
Departing Lake Galilee we visit Cana for Mass. We then journey west to Haifa, the largest city in Northern Israel. Here the Mediterranean Sea wraps around three sides of Haifa with intoxicating blue and gold beaches. In this region we come to the Stella Maris Monastery at Mount Carmel where in the lower cave, Elijah was said to have meditated on his victory over the false prophets of Baal. We then make our way to the House of Grace, a Catholic ministry that works with the most marginalised members of Haifa: Christians, Jews and Muslims who are in need of counselling, guidance, and material aid. Here we will share lunch and hear an inspired talk about this powerful ministry to rehabilitate released prisoners. Journey south to the crusader port of Caesarea Maritima, built by Herod the Great. The centurion Cornelius was baptized here by Peter, becoming the first gentile convert to Christianity. Also see the harbour from which St Paul was taken to Rome. Finally we journey up to Jerusalem - the City of our God.
Jerusalem overnight

Day 11: TUESDAY 24TH SEPTEMBER – JERUSALEM (BD)
We visit the Mt of Olives to enjoy a panoramic view over the city before we commence our walk down the Palm Sunday Road and arrive at the Dominus Flevit for Mass. This church was built on the site where Jesus wept over the city of Jerusalem. We then visit the Garden of Gethsemane, where we will enter the Church of the Agony containing the bare rock upon which Jesus is said to have prayed before his arrest. Here we will also visit a Crusader Church which contains the Tomb of the Virgin Mary - the place of her assumption into heaven. From here we see the path Jesus was taken along as a prisoner while ascending Mt Zion to the house of the High Priest Caiaphas. Here, at the Church of St Peter in Gallicantu, Our Lord was interrogated and imprisoned, while Peter denied Jesus three times. Continue on to the Cenacle, room of the Last Supper and the Church of Dormition where Our Lady ‘fell asleep’ in death.
Jerusalem overnight

Day 12: WEDNESDAY 25TH SEPTEMBER - JERUSALEM (BD)
We begin our day with the Stations of the Cross as we pray and follow in Our Lord’s footsteps along the traditional Via Dolorosa to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre where we will celebrate an unforgettable Mass. After breakfast back at our hotel we return to the old city, to the vicinity of the Temple Mount where we view the Dome of the Rock, El Aqsa Mosque and the Western (Wailing) Wall. Onwards to the Church of St Anne, built over the birthplace of the Virgin Mary and where we will enjoy the incredible acoustics of this sacred place. See nearby the Pool of Bethesda where Jesus healed the paralysed man.
Jerusalem overnight

Day 13: THURSDAY 26TH SEPTEMBER - BETHLEHEM (BLD)
We begin our day with a visit to Ein Karem, the birthplace of St John the Baptist and site of the Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth. We travel out to Bethlehem visiting Bethlehem University and after a short orientation, we will engage with some students in discussion. We will then visit the beautiful chapel and share a special lunch with some students. We will continue on to nearby Shepherds’ Field to commemorate the appearance of the angels to the shepherds on that first Christmas night, and celebrate Mass. Back in Bethlehem we will visit the Church of the Nativity built over the stable where Jesus was born. Bending low, we enter the church through the Door of Humility and descend into the Grotto of the Nativity. A silver star in the floor marks the very spot where Christ was born. Return to Jerusalem in time for dinner.
Jerusalem overnight

Day 14: FRIDAY 27TH SEPTEMBER - MASADA & BETHANY (BD)
We journey south along the Dead Sea to Qumran where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered by a Bedouin shepherd boy (1947). We continue travelling alongside the Dead Sea to the historical Masada where we will embark on the cable car offering spectacular views to the summit. Here we will enjoy a guided tour of Herod’s fortress and the Zealots’ last stand. After our descent, we reboard our coach and travel west to the Monastery of St George, nestled in the lush Wadi Qelt. Continue on to relive the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead in Bethany. Here we celebrate Mass in the Church of St Lazarus. To deepen our experience and understanding of the Jewish heritage, back in Jerusalem we will partake in a Friday evening Sabbath Experience Meal in a local Jewish home. Here we will ‘Taste & See’ the Jewish culture and how it relates to Christian faith while joining in traditional prayers and songs before our delicious 4 course middle eastern meal.
Jerusalem overnight

Day 15: SATURDAY 28TH SEPTEMBER - JERUSALEM & SURROUNDS (BD)
This morning we travel out to the site of Emmaus (El Qubeibeh) and celebrate our group Mass here, taking some time to admire the view over the hill country towards the Mediterranean Sea. Return to Jerusalem where we enter the Israel Museum for an orientation viewing of the Second Temple scale model of Jerusalem as it was in the time of Jesus. Then proceed to the Shrine of the Book to view the Dead Sea Scrolls with our own eyes, and the Archaeology wing to see the remarkable artworks and treasures on display. Remainder of the afternoon is at leisure to pray, rest or perhaps wander the Old City. For our final night together, we will enjoy a Special Celebration Dinner with spectacular views over all of Jerusalem.
Jerusalem overnight

Day 16: SUNDAY 29TH SEPTEMBER - DEPART THE HOLY LAND (B)
This morning we depart Israel, crossing the border into Jordan and on to Amman airport for our homebound flight connections.

Day 17: MONDAY 30TH SEPTEMBER - IN TRANSIT (B)

Day 18: TUESDAY 1ST OCTOBER - ARRIVE NEW ZEALAND

 
Inclusions
AIRFARES: Economy class airfare from Auckland (N.B. Airlines taxes are included on standard itinerary and subject to fluctuations).
ACCOMMODATION & MEALS: Based on Superior Standard / 4-Star accommodation • All meals – 14 Dinners / 14 Full Breakfasts / 4 Lunches.
TOURING AND TRANSPORTATION: Deluxe Air Conditioned Coach touring • Professional Pilgrimage Escort / Local Guides • Sightseeing and Entrance Fees.
OTHER: Fully Escorted by Pilgrimage Chaplain • Porterage at hotels • Harvest Backpack, Pilgrims Journal and Tour Wallet.

cost
Tour Code: PV4219
Tour Begins: 14 September 2019
Tour Ends: 01 October 2019

Air and Land Tour: From NZD $8490 per person twin share
Single Room: NZD $2570
Tipping Made Easy: NZD $10 per person/per day

*NB: Prices are based on an estimated group size of 35 paying pilgrims, calculated as at October 2018. Prices remain subject to possible changes in the unlikely event of significant exchange rate variations, airfare increases or minimum group contingencies.

Insurance
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