The Holy Land
Msgr Smetanka & Our Lady Star of the Sea Parish
February 19 - 28, 2024
Space is limited!
DAY 1: DEPART DTW - Begin our pilgrimage to The Holy Land with an overnight flight to Israel.
DAY 2: TEL AVIV / NETANYA - On arrival in Tel Aviv we will be met by our Catholic guide and transferred to our hotel on the Mediterranean coast. Dinner will be served at the hotel. D
DAY 3: CAESAREA MARITIMA / STELLA MARIS (Our Lady Star of the Sea) / CANA – Our day begins with a visit Caesarea to view the impressive archaeological remains of the Roman and Byzantine city that once dominated the region. Here, God revealed to Peter the Good News was for the whole world. From Caesarea Paul set sail for Rome for his future trial and martyrdom. We then travel to Haifa to celebrate Mass, have lunch at Stella Maris Church on Mt Carmel and visit Elijah’s Cave. We then visit Cana where Jesus performed His first miracle of turning water into wine. For those who wish, they may perform the renewal of their wedding vows. On to our hotel on the Sea of Galilee. B | L | D
DAY 4: SEA OF GALILEE / NAZARETH / MT TABOR - The day starts with a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee before visiting Nazareth where we will celebrate Mass in the Basilica of the Annunciation and visit the Church of St. Joseph. We then travel to Mount Tabor, the site of the Transfiguration, where Jesus revealed His glory. Mass will be at the Basilica designed to represent the three tents Peter, James and John wished to erect. Back to our hotel for dinner and overnight. B | D
DAY 5: SEA OF GALILEE / CAESAREA PHILIPPI - After breakfast we visit the Mount of Beatitudes, scene of the Sermon on the Mount. Then to Tabgha where Jesus fed the 5,000 and onto the site known as “Peter’s Primacy” where Jesus told Peter to “feed my lambs; feed my sheep.” On to Capernaum where Jesus launched his Ministry; see the synagogue dated to the time of Jesus and the church built over the site of Peter’s home. We celebrate Mass and then enjoy a lunch of St Peter Fish, before going to Caesarea Philippi, where Jesus told St. Peter “You are the Rock, and upon this rock I will build my Church.” B | L | D
DAY 6: JORDAN VALLEY / QUMRAN/ DEAD SEA - Today we depart Galilee and drive south to Jericho, the world’s oldest continuously inhabited city, to view the Mt of Temptation and see an example of a Sycamore Tree up which Zacchaeus climbed to see Jesus. After Holy Mass the local Franciscan school, we will confirm our baptismal vows at the site where John baptized Jesus. We then visit Qumran and learn of the Dead Sea Scrolls. After a float in the Dead Sea, we drive up to the City of David - Jerusalem. B | D
DAY 7: EIN KAREM / BETHLEHEM – We begin the day with a visit to Ein Karem, birthplace of John the Baptist. We visit the church commemorating his memory and the Church of the Visitation. We then drive to see the cave at the Shepherds’ Field which still has soot marks of the fires the shepherds lit to keep warm. After lunch, it’s on to the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem where will descend to the Grotto of the Nativity; here Jesus Christ was born to the Virgin Mary. After Mass at the Church of St. Catherine return to the hotel in Jerusalem. B | L | D
DAY 8: MT. OF OLIVES / GETHSEMANE / MT. ZION - We ascend Mount of Olives to visit the Pater Noster shrine where Jesus taught His disciples The Lord’s Prayer. Walking down the Palm Sunday Road we stop at the beautiful Dominus Flevit Church - “The Lord wept.” We continue to the Garden of Gethsemane and visit the Church of All Nations to pray at the “Rock of Agony,” where Jesus prayed on the night of His arrest. From there, we visit Peter in Gallicantu, “Crowing Rooster,” church built over the site of the house of the High Priest Caiaphas and commemorating Peter’s denial of Jesus. After we celebrate Mass, we visit the Upper Room. Return to hotel. B | D
DAY 9: JERUSALEM / VIA DOLOROSA / HOLY SEPULCHRE / WESTERN WALL - We start our day with an early Holy Mass at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Here is the site of Calvary and the Tomb of Christ. We will then transfer back to the hotel for breakfast and some relaxation before continuing our day. We will visit St Anne’s Church and the Pools of Bethesda before starting the Via Dolorosa at the Antonia Fortress where Jesus was condemned to death by Pontius Pilate. We process through the markets of the Old City to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Lunch on our own in The Old City before we visit the Western Wall. The rest of the afternoon is free before our Farewell Dinner. B | D B | D
DAY 10: HOLY LAND > DETROIT—Today we transfer to the airport for our flight home after a spiritual journey in the footsteps of Jesus. Shalom and God bless!
* double occupancy (single supplement $900)
Itinerary subject to change