Our morning began on the shore of the Sea of Galilee at the Church of the Multiplication of Loaves and Fish. After seeing the beautiful church that was rebuilt after being damaged by arson in 2015, we walked to the shore for communion. The birdsong in this region is beautiful and accompanied us throughout the day. Our final song was We are marching in the Light of God, with one of the verses “We are dancing in the Light of God.” It seemed to be the theme for the day, as we moved around the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee. By mid afternoon, as we sailed on the Sea to experience the water, our host taught us how to dance the Hava nagila, so we all danced our way across the waters. Near sunset, we climbed to the Church of the Beatitudes, where we were almost alone, giving us time to explore, pray, enjoy the birdsong (parrots flew among the eucalyptus trees).
Our guide Lazarus is an exegetical companion, interpreting for us the meaning of the places we visit and the scriptural references to each place. He’s an Armenian Christian with seminary education in his tradition and a graduate degree in Hebrew studies. We are fortunate.