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A Welcoming Space in the Heart of the City

Advent: A Virtual Pilgrimage

PREPARE THE WAY… to welcome Jesus into our world and lives


Prepare for the birth of our saviour Jesus, join our online pilgrimage/retreat. 

We will be visiting Holy sites in Jerusalem, Nazareth, the Judean desert and Bethlehem with professional tour guides in the Holy Land.
We will also have 5 lectures by well known Holy Land based Jewish and Christian scholars to deepen our understanding of our faith and the Holy Scriptures. 
We will have the opportunity to interact with the lecturers.
To round off each weekend of activities, there will be an opportunity of guided spiritual reflection - either individually or in a group on the relevance of what we have heard and what this means for us in our relationship with God and with one another.


Saturdays 13.00-14.30 GMT: A 90 minutes excursion with a local tour guide (Holy sites in Jerusalem, Nazareth, the Judean desert and Bethlehem).

Lecture and spiritual reflection

(Sunday 13.00-15.00 GMT):
A lecture by a biblical scholar based in the Holy Land followed by a short guided spiritual reflection.

The Sunday Session

50 min - Lecture
15 min - Question and Answer session with the speaker.
10 min - Break
10 min - Guided Spiritual Reflection
15 min - Personal prayer
15 min - Sharing (No obligation only share if you feel comfortable sharing)
05 min - Closing prayer

Theme Day Date Topic Guide / Lecturer
1 Annunciation to Zachariah Saturday 21-Nov-2020 Jerusalem during the second temple period Jarod Goldfarb
Sunday 22-Nov-2020 Judaism Dr. Debbie Weisman
2 Annunciation to Mary Saturday 28-Nov-2020 Nazareth Nizar Halloun
Sunday 29-Nov-2020 The Annunciation Rev. Yohanna Katanacho
3 Birth of St. John the Baptist Saturday 05-Dec-2020 The desert of the Holy land Kamal Mukarker
Sunday 06-Dec-2020 Waiting for the Messiah Dr. Marcie Lenk
4 The revelation to Joseph when the angel appeared to Joseph in a dream Saturday 12-Dec-2020 Jerusalem today Hana Bendcowsky
Sunday 13-Dec-2020 The mystery of Joseph the Just Fr. David Neuhaus
5 Preparation for celebrating Jesus's birth Saturday 19-Dec-2020 Bethlehem Kamal Mukarker
Sunday 20-Dec-2020 Wings of hope Ursula Mukarker

Tour Guides

Jared Goldfarb

Jared Goldfarb - Based in Jerusalem

Originally from the woods of New Hampshire, USA, Jared moved to Jerusalem in 1996 not long after completing his degree in Russian Theatre at Brandeis University.
After then studying at Machon Pardes, the Hartman Institute, and the National Tour guide Course, he served for 8 years as the Program Director of Ta Shma: Pluralistic Jewish Learning.
He now works as a freelance Jewish/Israel educator for numerous institutions around the country.
Besides working as a tour guide, Jared is also a theatre addict, an avid biker, and an environmental activist.

Hana Bendcowsky

Hana Bendcowsky - Based in Jerusalem

Hana Bendcowsky is the programme director of the Jerusalem Centre for Jewish-Christian Relations (JCJCR).
She holds a M.A. degree in Comparative Religions from Hebrew University and has 20 years of practical experience in interfaith activities in Israel and abroad.
She teaches in varied institutions, colleges, academic programmes and Christian seminaries, including the IDF, governmental offices and institutions.
She also works as a tour educator in Jerusalem.
Her expertise is the Christian Communities in Israel and Jewish-Christian Relations in the Israeli context.

Nizar Halloun

Nizar Halloun - Based in Nazareth

Christian-Palestinian Israeli citizen, photojournalist and licensed tour guide.
While devoted to Jerusalem, his roots are in Galilee.
Specializing in the Byzantine and Crusader periods in the Holy Land and has a soft spot for Christian denominations,
liturgies, and world religions.
Kamal Mukarker

Kamal Mukarker - Based in Bethlehem

Is a licensed tour guide in the West Bank for the German, English and Arabic speaking tourists. He has been working as a tour guide for the last 10 years.
He first graduated from Talitah Kumi a German Lutheran school. after which he studied accounting in Bethlehem University a Catholic University, in Germany in the city of Ingolstadt achieved his MBA Masters in International project Management, and did his further studies in USA in the city of Boston as a Certified Public Accountant.
Kamal worked in Bethlehem University as a lecturer and a project manager for a World Bank project in the area of business incubation, where after that he diverted to tourism as that is the field where he did find himself explaining and lecturing about his Christian community in specific and about peace in the holy land in general and teaches at the bible collage the tour guide course.
His focus is on the biblical geography, history of the land, and life in Palestine, he is married and a father of four 3 girls and a boy. Kamal is also a basketball player in the Palestinian league and trains women and young men basketball.


Deborah Weissman

Dr. Deborah Weissman - Based in Jerusalem

Born in New York City, Debbie settled in Israel in 1972.
Her Ph.D. is from the Hebrew University on the social history of Jewish women's education.
She is one of the founding members of Kehillat Yedidya, an Orthodox synagogue in Jerusalem's Bak'a neighbourhood which integrates Halacha (Jewish religious law) with feminism, tolerance and pluralism.
Debbie is involved with Jewish religious feminism, interfaith dialogue and the religious peace movement.
David Neuhaus

Fr. David Neuhaus SJ - Based in Jerusalem

Born in Johannesburg. Religious profession in the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) 1994. Ordained to the priesthood in Jerusalem in 2000.
Completed BA, MA, and PhD (Political Science) at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and degrees in Theology at Centre Sèvres in Paris and Scriptures at the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome.
Appointed Patriarchal Vicar for Hebrew-speaking Catholics by Patriarch Fouad Twal from 2009 – 2017.
He was also Coordinator of the Pastoral Care for migrant workers and asylum seekers until 2017. Teaches Scriptures at the the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem Seminary and in the Religious Studies Department at Bethlehem University.
Marcie Lenk

Dr. Marcie Lenk - Based in Jerusalem

Dr Marcie Lenk devoted her intellectual life and career to organizing educational programs and teaching Jews and Christians (and people of other faiths) to understand and appreciate the basic texts, ideas, history and faith of the other. She lives in Jerusalem, where she currently serves as the Academic Director of Institute Saint-Pierre de Sion, Ratisbonne: Bat Kol Christian Institute for Jewish Studies. She teaches patristics at the Studium Theologicum Salesianum at Ratisbonne Monastery, and Jewish and Christian texts at Ecce Homo Convent, and the Tantur Ecumenical Institute. For the last six years she served as director of Christian leadership programmes at the Shalom Hartman Institute. She received her Ph.D. at Harvard University in 2010 and earned an M.T.S. from Harvard Divinity School, as well as an M.A. in Bible and B.A. in Mathematics and Jewish Studies from Yeshiva University.
Dr. Lenk has lectured in Europe, Israel, and the United States, and has taught Early Christianity, Hebrew Bible, and Rabbinic Literature at institutions such as Boston University and City College of New York, as well as at Jewish and Christian seminaries in Israel and the United States.
Yohanna Katanacho

Rev. Yohanna Katanacho - Based in Nazareth

Rev. Yohanna Katanacho is currently a full professor of Biblical Studies and academic dean at Nazareth Evangelical College.
He is a Palestinian Israeli Evangelical who studied at Bethlehem University (B.Sc.), Wheaton College (M.A.) and Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (M. Div.; Ph.D.).
He has authored many books in English and Arabic including "The Land of Christ: A Palestinian Cry".
Dr. Katanacho is an Old Testament editor for Arabic Contemporary Commentary and Asia Bible Commentary.
He is also one of the authors of the Palestinian Kairos Document.
Rev. Katanacho is married to Dina, the director of the Arab Israeli Bible Society, and they have three boys: Immanuel, Jonathan, and Chris.
Ursula Mukarker

Ursula Mukarker - Based in Bethlehem

Ursula is the general manager of the organization “Wings of Hope for trauma” in Bethlehem since 2011, a holder of three master degrees in Translation and Political Science from the Rheinischen Friedrich-Wilhelms University, Bonn- Germany, in Community Mental Health from Al Quds University Abu-Dies, and in Clinical Psychology from Al-Najah University.
For the last ten years Ursula is a trainer and supervisor in Psycho-traumatology.
Part of her work is raising awareness about mental health issues, especially trauma in Palestine and its effects in society, she also works to enhance the social and psychological environment in her community. She believes in the principles of human rights, gender equality, integrity, transparency, and combating all forms of violence.
She is married, a mother of two girls Leen and Zeina, lives in the city of Bethlehem and belongs to its Christian community.

The guides, have been suffering from loss of income with few pilgrims to the Holy Land this year because of Covid19.
Therefore we invite our virtual pilgrims for donations, the majority of which will go to support guides, speakers and charities in the Holy Land.
Book Now
Register now for our pilgrimage by clicking box above

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