Rector’s May Message

Dear Friends, As some of you are aware my wife Cameron and I were blessed to be on pilgrimage to Jerusalem and Palestine for two weeks during this past season of Lent. I am delighted to announce that just before Lent next year we will be able to return with two dozen pilgrims to this life-challenging and life-changing place. Our travel dates are February 6 – 17, 2015.     What I am even more grateful for is that our guides, The Rev. Canon John L. Peterson and Iyad Qumri agreed to lead us on this journey. Both men are uniquely equipped to do this. John recently retired as the Washington National Cathedral’s first Canon for Global Justice and Reconciliation. Prior to serving in Washington, Canon Peterson was the Secretary General of the Anglican Consultative Council, one of the instruments of unity in the Anglican Communion. Before his appointment as Secretary General, he served as Dean of St. George’s College in Jerusalem for 12 years. By training he is an archaeologist as well.      Iyad is a Palestinian Anglican Christian who was born and raised in Jerusalem. He is a licensed guide who has been leading tours of Israel and Palestine since 1997 and is thoroughly familiar with Biblical pilgrimage sites. Iyad is fluent in English, Arabic, and Hebrew. He and his wife, Simone, librarian at St. George’s College, have a home in Jericho. They have two sons who both attend college in the U.S.     On the Pilgrimage we will explore the Old City of Jerusalem, its markets and shrines, including the Western Wall, the Dome of the Rock, and the Church of the Resurrection (Holy Sepulcher). We will visit towns where Jesus lived or visited: Nazareth, Bethlehem, Capernaum, Jericho, Caesarea Philippi, Mount of the Beatitudes, Nablus and Emmaus. We will feel the life of the Judean Desert, the Dead Sea, and the Jordan River and worship with Christians in ancient and modern churches.     It is a physically, spiritually, intellectually and emotionally inspiring and taxing trip. It is something that will change the way that you read Scripture and understand Christianity, Judaism, and Islam.  For more information contact Cameron at cdmerrow@gmail.com or speak with us at church. We are excited and grateful that this opportunity has arisen for our parish.     Cameron and I will offer reflections on our trip when we can find a spot on the parish calendar.     May the peace of the Lord always be with you.     Faithfully,     Andrew+