Today Tim and I had a special treat – we were invited to accompany Bishop Younan and other Jerusalem Lutheran Clergy to “Christmas Greetings” at the Armenian Patriarchate in Jerusalem. While western Christianity celebrates Christmas on December 25 and Orthodox Christians celebrated it on January 6 this year, the Armenian Patriarchate in Jerusalem is unique in celebrating Christmas and Epiphany together on January 18 & 19. It is the custom for the Christian leaders in Jerusalem to visit each other for their Christmas celebrations so today we got to tag along with Bishop Younan for these greetings which included a welcome by the Armenian Patriarch and greetings by the Latin (Roman Catholic) Patriarch. Those Christian leaders in Jerusalem who attended today’s gathering are pictured here:
That’s Bishop Younan fourth from the left with the Anglian and Greek Orthodox leaders on either side of him. The Roman Catholic Bishop is third from the right and our host Armenian Patriarch is fourth from the right.
Tim produced a short video about this event – you will find it here.
We then had a long interview with Bishop Younan which we taped in the Crusader Chapel of Redeemer Lutheran Church in the Old City of Jerusalem.
However, most of our day was spent working on the videotaping for our “Stations of the Cross” video Bible Study.
Here we are working on the final five Stations, all of which are located in or around the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the Old City of Jerusalem. We completed close to one half of our work on these studies today!
The day closed with a lovely dinner with a number of young adults who work in various Palestinian ministries in the area, including the ELCA Young Adults in Global Mission who are working here this year.
We are tired, but, hey, we got to celebrate Christmas again today!
Still at it…