Holy Land 2019: We welcomed a new Christian at the site of Jesus’ baptism

Pilgrims visit the site of the Baptism of Jesus. Photo by Vivian Cabrera.

Today, we visited the Baptismal site at Qasr Al Yahoud, which holds the oldest and most ancient tradition for being the place of Jesus’ baptism by John the Baptist in the Jordan River (Matthew, 3: 13-17). Here we were invited to renew our baptismal promises. Then, we arrived in Jericho, where we paused at the famous sycamore tree and recalled the story of Jesus and Zacchaeus, the tax collector. We also proceeded to Bethany, site of the traditional tomb of Lazarus for Mass and time for reflection. Here is a reflection by James Martin, pilgrimage leader. 

Pilgrimages are always filled with surprises. But today all of us were surprised by a sacrament. One of our pilgrims, Judy, was baptized for the first time at the Jordan River. We had just renewed our baptismal vows when a priest in our group, started to pour water over Judy’s head. Everyone instinctively knew what was happening and fell silent. How wonderful it was to welcome a new Christian into our group.

For more on the 2019 Holy Land Pilgrimage, visit here. You can send us your prayer requests here.

Advertisement
Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement

The latest from america

Sister Bibiana Emenaha
A combination of a rapidly growing population, extreme poverty, unemployment and armed conflict push people to cross Nigeria’s porous borders in search of a better life.
Linus UnahMarch 22, 2019
As we come to grips with a national history of violence, greed and racialized privilege, this fable of noblesse oblige rings hollow.
Brandon SanchezMarch 22, 2019
In "Miracle Workers" Simon Rich balances the surreal with the mundane and anchors fantasy with practicality, providing the perfect stakes for dramatic and comedic tension.
Jake Kring-SchreifelsMarch 22, 2019
Sharon Hogan and Rob Delaney (photo: IMDB)
The hit Amazon show asks: Can we really just be unapologetically ourselves?
Jim McDermottMarch 22, 2019