Trip of a Lifetime

Gallery

 I would like to stay longer and soak up the three world’s religion: Islāmic, Judaism, and Christianity.  I want to be with the Muslims, Jews, and Christians: and have interfaith dialogue. At the hotel in Jordan, waiting to leave for Canada, I … Continue reading

Walls of Jerusalem

Gallery

This gallery contains 6 photos.

The walls of Jerusalem are originally built to protect the city from intrusion and a defense under the rule of the Ottoman empire. Inside these walls is the seat of Judaism, Islam and Christianity. The wall has so many gates … Continue reading

Jerusalem: Filmed for IMAX and Giant Screen Theaters

Video

Jerusalem: Video Clip

If you have the time, please view the  breathtaking scenes on Jerusalem today. Don’t take too long, though, for it might be taken off any time soon because of copyright.

After a year of research and preparation, the giant screen film JERUSALEM advanced into production with an unprecedented aerial shoot throughout Israel and the West Bank.

The film will take the audiences on a spectacular tour of the Holy Land and the city once believed to be the centre of the world.

A 7-minute preview of a new IMAX film on Jerusalem. The aerial views are breathtaking and in HD Quality.

Peace ~ Moving beyond

The common thread between me and other immigrants, we fled our country to move beyond, sometimes, to move beyond hate. 
Hate is a strong word. 
When I was younger, I wrote a term paper the Pros and Cons of Capital Punishment.  The final analyst of the paper, I was for electric chair, a capital punishment.  This was based on a young mind being exposed to violence.  Not in my home where love thrives but due to poor government system and being under the regime of so many super powers. 
Hearing and reading stories is not good for a young mind for I learned the word hate. 
I hated what the Spaniards did, I hated what the Japanese did, I hated what the Americans did, and I hated the martial law, hate, hate, hate… 
Here in Canada, I learnt the history of the holocaust from watching the movie Schindler’s List.  I hated the Germans. 
Fortunately, there is one immigrant that helps me move beyond hate.  Eva Olsson, a holocaust survivor and she lives here in Canada. 
Her life philosophy in life is:
> Live one day at a time and make it a masterpiece.
> Treat others the way you want to be treated.
> Racism is a learned attitude
>Make a choice.
> Change your attitude.
She is right.  I cannot change the past and I can definitely change my attitude.
Eva Olsson: Canadian Immigrant ~ Holocaust Survivor

Eva Olsson: Canadian Immigrant ~ Holocaust Survivor

Subsequently, I began to find my VOICE.  Stand Up!  Speak Up! 
By being silent I will suffer.  That is why I have to speak out against intolerance, violence, disrespect, mendacity and any forms that will kill the soul of a human being.  If I maintain this silent attitude and accept the inhumanity, then, I have just lost the purpose and meaning of life.  That purpose comes from the heart connected to the mind.  As much as possible, I leave little room for hatred and cultivate love. 
Love brings peace.  A moment of Peace, a day of Peace, and never-ending Peace is what I strive for. If I tell myself who I am, words are not enough.  I have to show you and I start with children. 
If I can only teach one child to become loving, forgiving, compassionate, kind and see the goodness of the world in the God of small things, then I have done my job.  Hopefully, the child in turn will teach other children and this can have a ripple effect. 
I changed and keep the deep abiding Love of God based on my Catholic faith to love one another as He loves us.  And this is Peace. 
Related Articles:

Sunday, January 6, 2013 , Epiphany Day

Happy Three Kings.    It’s the last day of Christmas based on my tradition.  I have mentioned this on my post Gimme – Traditionally Speaking .  If you want to read more about the history see Britannica – Epiphany.
Last night I reminded niece Lucy to bring out her shoes for the Three Kings since she forgot last year and missed out on the treats.  She was thankful for the reminder.
For myself, I hanged these shoes on my door.  On my side of the building, my neighbours are mostly Christians.  I don’t know if they practice, though.  However, they understand what those shoes mean to me.
Shoes for Three Kings

Shoes for Three Kings

 Needless to say, I received some treats from the Three Kings and then some.  Next celebration is Easter Sunday.  Mark your calendar that will April 7, 2013.

In my faith, today is also called Epiphany.  The meaning from Webster Dictionary is:
: an appearance or manifestation especially of a divine being
: an intuitive grasp of reality through as an event usually simple and striking
: an illuminating discovery, realization, or disclosure
: a revealing scene or moment
: a usually sudden manifestation or perception of the essential nature or meaning of something 

Have you ever had an Epiphany?  I think I did.  And let me tell you this story that happened in 2011 Pilgrimage to Holy Land, Egypt and Jordan. 

Pandemonium!  Everybody was excited to go home after 21 days of being on the road as a Pilgrim.  People are coming in and out of their hotel rooms.  Checking each other’s luggage.  Sharing stories, pictures and laughter.  What did you buy to bring home?  What’s your favourite place? What, what, what?  Too many questions and I am starting to become tone-deaf.  I need some solitude.

I would like to stay longer and soak up the three world’s religion: Islāmic, Judaism and Christianity.  I want to be with the Muslims, Jews and Christians: and have an Interfaith Dialogue.  But good things must come to an end.

Last night at Jordan side:  I retreated to the balcony to find some peace and quiet, drinking tea and having a smoke.  The balcony is facing a beautiful garden and overlooking the Dead Sea.  I could see Israel from the balcony.  On a clear day, I could literally see the walls of the old Jerusalem.  On the right, I can imagine the location of Bethlehem, Nazareth and other geographical areas of where ancient time began based on the First and Old Testament.  This will be my last trip.  I have now covered the places of the Testaments.  The Bible will become truly alive in my mind and heart.  The readings during the mass will be more meaningful for my mind can conjure the places where I have visited.  Gratitude, I am filled with gratitude to my God for making it possible for me to experience the trip of a lifetime.

It’s dark.  Only a silhouette of the mountain is visible.  The lights were flickering across the waters.  Inside the hotel room, commotion ruled.

I settled in the dark, trying to calm myself down.  It’s good to be here, Lord.  I started speaking in my mind.  Careful that nobody will hear me for they already think I’m batty.  Don’t care.  Then, whispering softly, I raised my right arm, started waving goodbye to Israel.

Goodbye, Jerusalem
            Goodbye, Bethlehem
                        Goodbye, Nazareth

Oh, what is that?  A star?  A bright shining star that appeared so close and yet so far.  Hmm, is it a plane?  No, it’s not moving.  Ok then, as I made this schizophrenic dialogue within myself.  One asks; the other personality answers.  Oh, let me see.  That’s Jerusalem, that’s, Nazareth; that’s Bethlehem.  Aha!  This must be the STAR that the Magi saw.  Imagine that and it’s not even Christmas yet.

Last Night at Jordan - Nov 2011

Last Night at Jordan – Nov 2011

 Excitement came rushing out of my body.  I must take a picture.  Made a quick dash inside the room, grabbed my camera and Neli, another pilgrim, to show her what I see.  This rushing must have only taken 15 to 25 seconds.  When I got out, the STAR is gone.  Oh, no.  It’s gone.  I was so disappointed and sad that I have no picture to show off about my last night.  Checked the horizon if there’s anything floating in the sky that is as big as the STAR.  No, it’s pitched dark.  Neli gave me “the look”, walked out of the room.  Later I followed for it’s time to check out.
At Frankfurt airport, I pulled Father Priest on the side and told him about my experience.  He simply said in his infinite wisdom, the STAR is meant only for my eyes to see.  No camera can ever capture it.  I was so moved by his explanation and tears of joy came out.
Picture, yes, I have a picture of the STAR; in the eyes of my heart.  I praise you, O Lord, for your works are wonderful.  Blessed be God forever.