Barclay Viewforth Church congregation on Blackford Hill

From the Magazine: Afternoon Fellowship

All this week, we will be bringing you some of the articles that would have made their way into the April magazine, starting with an update from the Afternoon Fellowship.

Once again, we enjoyed an illustrated talk from Ann Paterson; this time supported by her husband Hugh and companions from the Portobello Group who made a trip to the Holy Land.
The Holy Land lies mainly in modern-day Israel and Jordan. Beginning in Jerusalem, they first visited the Temple Mount; a sacred spot for three of the world’s major religions-Judaism, Islam and Christianity and is also the site of the Holocaust Centre, making it a very busy place. We also saw other sites associated with Jesus’s time in Jerusalem We then visited Nazareth and Lake Galilee where it was easier to feel closer to the life that Christ led, than in crowded, busy Jerusalem.
Heading east into Jordan, we were in the land of the Old Testament. First stop was Mount Nebo, where Moses is said to have been shown the Promised Land, and then on to the “rose-red city, half as old as time”–Petra. A world heritage site. Petra was once the home of the Nabateans. Dating from at least the 2nd century B.C., its position on the Western end of important trade routes, meant all the major nations in the Eastern Med. occupied it at some time or another, till in the Byzantium era, improved shipping saw it disappear under the desert sands till rediscovered in the 19th Century. 
After enjoying the visit to Petra, we moved to Aqaba on the eastern arm of the Red Sea, where members of the party found themselves at home, swimming and snorkelling in the decidedly cold water of the Red Sea.  Could have been Portobello. From there we headed up the long valley, separating Israel and Jordan to the northern end of the Dead Sea where members of the party enjoyed the experience of swimming in water that definitely does not behave like water as we know it. The last sight was of the river Jordan.
It was a wonderful afternoon and we are very grateful to Ann and Hugh for sharing their memories with us.
Lorna Gentleman

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