As usual our day began with breakfast at the hotel and with a bight smile we all were set for our visit to Jerusalem. We visited The Mount of Olives which is a mountain ridge east of Jerusalem’s old city. We were briefed that the mount was named for the olives groves that once covered it.
We got off the coach and walked across the street to The Chapel of the Ascension. Mr Hani informed us that it was holy site where Jesus ascended into heaven. As we stepped inside we saw a small shrine surrounded by a courtyard with a paved path.
We later proceeded to the Church of Pater Noster, where Jesus taught the Lord’s Prayer to his disciples. One can read the Lord’s Prayer in different languages on walls around the church and its vaulted cloister.
We later walked to the Cave nestled in the same complex, it has a ancient rock and is said to be the one that Jesus sat on and thought the Lords Prayer.
On moving out of the church we were told that we were walking on Palm Sunday Road that Jesus followed when he entered into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. It begins at the Mount of Olives and leads past several holy sites, including the Garden of Gethsemane.
We walked through the street till the Church of Dominus Flevit which gave The panoramic view of Jerusalem.
As we were seated on the benches, Hani gave us a brief history. He pointed out at the Temple Mount with the Dome of the Rock in the middle, the domes of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, the graves in the Jewish, Catholic and Muslim cemetery. he said that it is believed when when the Messiah comes, the dead will revive at the end of the day.
We headed back on the Palm Sunday road which now had a descending steep slop till the lower western foothills, to the Basilica of Agony which is also known as “The Church of all Nation”.
Since explanation was prohibited inside the church we stood at a corner as Hani explained us. He stated that the name “Church of All Nations” commemorates the contributions made by different Nations. The flags of the nations are represented inside the little domes. The Nations that contributed are Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, Italy, Belgium, Canada, Germany and United States of America. The wrought Iron work surrounding the “Rock of Agony by Australia”.The modern church stands on the foundations of two ancient churches, a Byzantine Basilica was constructed during the time of Theodosius (A.D. 380) and The Crusader Basilica was erected in the 12th Century. The modern day Basilica , designed by the famous Italian Architect, Antonio Barluzzi. The Church enshrines a section of stone in the Garden of Gethsemane that is believed to be where Jesus prayed on the night of his arrest. Natural light filtered by alabaster windows creates a climate of prayer.
We exited the Church passing through the Olive trees to see the coach waiting for us and thus we ended our beautiful trail.