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    The Upper New York Conference of The United Methodist Church


    Perspectives: Journey through the Holy Land

    Journey through the Holy Land: A life-long dream fulfilled

    February 12, 2018 / By Pastor Andy Anderson / 2 Comments

    My trip to the Holy Land was a life-long dream fulfilled. It was indeed a blessing for me to be part of the group from the Upper New York Annual Conference The Garden of Gethsemaneon such pilgrimage. The beginning to the end was an awesome, spirit-filled experience.

    One of the highlights of the trip for me was on the very first day. Bishop Webb led worship and preached on the bank of the Jordan River and part of the worship experience was witnessing one of our guests in my group being baptized in the Jordan River by his pastor. It was a moment of awe as I reflected on the Scripture of Jesus’s cousin John the Baptist, baptizing those who repented of their sins and also baptizing Jesus, the Savior of the world. I was reminded that it was on that occasion the Holy Spirit came upon Jesus and he heard the voice of God commending him and offering assurance of love.

    It was after that inspiring moment, that Spirit-Filled moment that Jesus was heading to a gruesome experience that ultimately led him to Calvary. Having touched the water of the Jordan, being with the entire group in a boat sailing on the Worship on the Sea of GalileeSea of Galilee, worshiping and praising God as the rain poured and as the thunder rolled, was a powerful reminder and visual to the story of Jesus calling his first disciples by the Sea of Galilee. Having visited the Garden of Gethsemane, walked the Via Dolorosa (The Way of the Cross), the traditional pathway Jesus took from the “Hall of Judgement” to Calvary and seeing the different stations where it is believed Jesus fell, has touched me deeply. The privilege to walk such path has opened up for me a whole new perspective and understanding of the life of Jesus Christ.

    This trip was one in which the Bible came alive for me in varying ways. The rich history and important sites of the Holy Land was well appreciated. This dream fulfilled has left an indelible impact on my Christian life. Thanks God!

    Comments 2

    Pastor Andy, thanks for sharing your experience. I can only imagine how that trip would impact a person's spiritual life. You were a blessing to our church and I know that you will continue to be a blessing to all with whom you come in contact.

    .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on February 17, 2018 at 11:11 am

    Thank you Andy for sharing this. Even after a month at home, I am still trying to embrace all we saw and experienced. You were a great bus leader, I enjoyed getting to know you.

    .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on February 23, 2018 at 3:00 pm

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    With more than 168,000 members, the Upper New York Annual (Regional) Conference of The United Methodist Church comprises 867 local churches and 65 new faith communities in 12 districts, covering 48,000 square miles in 49 of the 62 counties in New York state. Our mission is to “live the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to be God’s love with our neighbors in all places."