Our Second Shabbat in the Land

Shabbat MealOur second Shabbat started a little later than normal. At Abraham Hostel, they gather everyone to cook at 6pm, then start the Shabbat meal at 8. It’s already a few hours into Shabbat, but because they are dealing with tourists who are out seeing the sites, it works. Whether it’s right or not, I would not venture to say. What I do know is that most of the people who attend have never experienced a Shabbat meal, so at least it’s an introduction. It also gave us an opportunity to have an affordable meal that  we could prepay.

It was nice, because it was the first meal we were together since the last Shabbat. It was a time to enjoy each other’s company and reconnect with Catherine and Lawrence who had to stay behind when we headed south. Catherine came down with a bad cold and couldn’t even get out of bed.

In the morning, we attended Ro’eh Israel congregation. There we were pleasantly surprised to see our friend Yveth from Temple Aron HaKodesh. Yveth was with another tour, but because of flight arrangements, ended up staying a couple of extra days. I got to see my friend, PL again.

PL (his ‘handle’ of Proclaim Liberty) is a cantor at the congregation, and while I don’t understand most of what he is praying, it is beautiful to hear and filled with the Spirit. One of the guys with us (from a church) was blown away by the service. Everyone there is so welcoming and kind, especially to strangers. They a wonderful English interpreter, who helps us through the teaching.

After service we walked to the Israel Museum. The place is HUGE. I’ve been there 3 times now, and still have only scratched the surface of what they offer. This time I spent the bulk of my visit at a visiting display ‘Pharoah in Canaan, the Untold Story’. It was enlightening seeing how Egypt was involved in the Land in early history. I was also able to see several articles of antiquity from Megiddo, Bet Shean, and Korazim.

Another interesting exhibit was the one on Judaism. There, I found a wood sukkah, bridal gowns, burial gown and burial carriage. My favorite find this visit was the synagagues. They brought the parts in and re-assembled them.

The night ended with our visit to the Citadel of David Night Spectacular. Here, the history of creation and Jerusalem is played out on the walls of the citadel. It is a beautiful, though sad display. It shows the beauty and splendor, as well as the destruction. I can’t help long for Messiah’s return when Jerusalem will once again be the center of the world, covered in the outward beauty of what she now holds inwardly.


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