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Friday, November 13, 2015

Just Another Day at Work

I love Jerusalem. I have lived in this city for over 32 years experiencing the events that influence our daily lives.  Times of joy and hope; times of despair and frustration. In the past few weeks I have spent many hours touring the Old City and am pleased to see tourist groups out and about enjoying the sites.

As I walked around I decided to photograph some holy sites from different perspectives. I met with Christians, Muslims and Jews who are struggling to make a living and hoping for a better future for their families. I am sharing with you the results of my week of touring

Light through a window - Church of All Nations, Gethsemane
Designed by Antonio Barluzzi in the 1920's, the alabaster windows only allow diffuse light to enter the church to create the gloomy night of Jesus' arrest

Byzantine Floor - Gethsemane - under the modern mosaic

Haram-eSharif with Dome of the Rock viewed from 1st Station of the Cross
The view from the Ommaryah School is something special. The school sits on the site of the Antonia Fortress which housed the Roman garrison 2,000 years ago. Every Friday afternoon the Franciscans start their walk of the Via Dolorosa from here.
Dove nesting in Western Wall
During the year a variety of birds nest in the Wall. Its deep crevices provide a perfect place to rest while the worshippers place notes in the cracks below.
 Ethiopian Jews Celebrating the Sigad Festival - Western Wall
Last week, Ethiopian Jews celebrated Sigad, on the 29th day of the Jewish month of Heshvan, commemorating the renewal of the covenant between the people of Israel and the Almighty, when Ezra and Nehemiah read out the Torah to the exiles who returned to Jerusalem.       
In Ethiopia, the priests, kesim, would read Torah chapters in the ancient Gez language, translated into Amharic, and deliver sermons in which they exhorted the people to observe the commandments and pray to be found worthy of returning to Zion.   Now an official day of celebration in Israel, Ethiopian Jews still celebrate Sigad despite having fulfilled their dream of reaching Israel.
Candles in the Holy Sepulchre
Armenian Crosses
For centuries Armenian pilgrims would engrave their crosses on the walls of their chapel after their long and arduous journey to Jerusalem

At the end of the day I sat in the Citadel at Jaffa Gate watching the sun set on the city
Beautiful City!

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