Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

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Holy Land Pilgrimage Day 37


Church of the Beatitudes

Today was a nice relaxing day with only one thing planned. We had Mass on the Mount of the Beatitudes this morning. Unfortunately, it was really raining when I got up. It did stop long enough for us to be able to get out and walk around on the mountain (hill, really) after Mass which was nice. There is such a beautiful view of the Sea of Galilee from up there. Jesus would have used the natural theater setting to give his famous Sermon on the Mount. There are many groves of banana trees now where all the people would have sat, but my imagination easily changed bananas into 1st century disciples. I was the cantor for Mass today and I picked some hymns that talked about the Beatitudes. I didn’t think much of it when I made the decision to do that, but it turned out to be a very powerful moment singing those songs right where Jesus first spoke those words.


Sea of Galilee from the Mt. of the Beatitudes

After walking around for a bit after Mass it was time to head home. We had arranged that we were going to walk back instead of taking the bus since it was only about a 30 minute walk. This was so that people could stay and pray for as long as they wanted without having to feel rushed to make the bus. This seemed like a really good idea. However, about 2/3 of the way back it started to rain and then it really started to pour. We were all soaked by the time we got home (I actually had come prepared with my rain gear, so I made out OK). After getting dried out we enjoyed our last evening in Galilee just relaxing and playing cards. There are so many memories to take from Galilee that I’m sure I have meditation material for many years.


Rain on the Sea of Galilee

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