Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Holy Land Tour: Mount of the Beatitudes

The second day of the trip began with a visit to the Mount of Beatitudes. There is a church built on the site where it is believed Jesus preached the Sermon on the Mount. The building has eight sides--one for each beatitude. The interior of the steeple inside the building is has the beatitudes inscribed in Latin.

Here is the outside of the church:

Which sits in a lovely, serene garden:

The interior of the church is filled with light and space:

The sanctuary is surrounded by a covered portico and from the back of the portico, on the top of the hill, you can see the Sea of Galilee:

We would visit many more churches built to commemorate important events in Jesus' life and ministry as we continued our travels across Israel, but for me, the Mount of the Beatitudes seemed most evocative of the person of Jesus Christ. 

As I told our group at the end of the trip, as a long-time choir member I often heard in my mind anthems that reflected what we were seeing. "Blest Are They" by David Haas, an anthem I have sung more times than I can count,  played continuously in my head for several days after being at the Mount of the Beatitudes. Here is a You Tube version, for my Fellow Travelers:

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