Wow, talk about walking in the footsteps (or should I say following in the wake?) of Jesus. We spent most of today around -- and on -- the Sea of Galilee, visiting many of the sites where Jesus performed miracles, including Cana, Tabgha (where it is believed he performed the miracle of the multiplication of the loaves and fishes) and Capernaum, where Jesus healed the man with the unclean spirit. Capernaum is also the location of St. Peter's home, seen (first picture) below the floor of a church built above it.
Of a day filled with many great experiences, two stood out. First was the Mount of the Beatitudes over looking the sea. The octagonal church built on the site is the perfect design for a structure dedicated to the eight blessings that open the Sermon on the Mount. The eight beatitudes are displayed in stained-glass above the altar (see second photo). Many people in the group of Catholic journalists found it to be a powerful place for prayer and reflection.
Second was a boat ride the group took on the Sea of Galilee (picture three shows everyone aiming to get that perfect shot from the boat). As two of my colleagues on the trip pointed out, Saturday's Gospel reading seemed tailor-made for the ride. The reading recounts a trip Jesus and the apostles took across the Sea of Galilee. During the journey, a violent squall breaks out and water starts filling the boat. Jesus calms the wind and asks of his frightened disciples, "Why are you terrified? Do you not yet have faith?" Nothing so dramatic happened during our short journey. The worst we had to contend with was a bout of rain toward the end of the ride.
Sunday's agenda includes Mass in Arabic at the Basilica of the Assumption and a trip to the Dead Sea before our arrival in Jerusalem. I'll post an update on OSV Daily Take. You can also follow me on Twitter at @shayesOSV.