Pilgrimage overview

MARCH 14-25, 2023

Led by the Rev. Marek Zabriskie

“I have traveled the world, but no place on earth has been more powerful for me to visit than to explore the Holy Land. Palestine has often been called “the Fifth Gospel.” Nothing takes a Christian deeper into the story of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection than physically walking in our Lord’s footsteps, seeing the sights that he saw, praying in the spot where he was born, baptized, tempted, transfigured, tried, crucified, and resurrected.

 I look forward to accompanying all of our Christ Church pilgrims on this incredible pilgrimage which will be led by a Palestinian Christian guide. This journey will be powerful on so many levels. We will pray and worship together, share wonderful meals, sleep in great accommodations, and see unforgettable sights. You will never read or listen to the Scriptures read aloud in the same way again. The Bible will come alive to you as if for the first time, and your faith will be immensely strengthened.”


  • Airfare (for details and restrictions, please download the brochure below)
  • All airport departure & passenger taxes
  • Hotel Accommodations
  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Entrance fees & local government taxes
  • Modern air-conditioned tour bus

Not Included

  • Single room supplement
  • Travel insurance
  • Any item of a personal nature
Download pdf brochure


+ Scheduled flights in"economy class" from Newark to Tel Aviv on United Airlines:
OUT March 14 UA84 Newark to Tel Aviv 3.55 pm /8.20 am (Mar 15)
RETURN March 25 UA85 Tel Aviv to Newark 11.30 am /4.45 pm

+ All airport departure & passenger taxes (US & Israel).

+ En Suite accommodation at Christian pilgrim hotels & guest houses
The Magdala Hotel (a luxurious property on the Sea of Galilee)
The Sunrise Hotel (a family run hotel close to Manger Square)
The Ambassador Boutique Hotel (a centrally located hotel in East Jerusalem)

+ Full board throughout (breakfast, lunch & dinner daily).

+ All entrance fees and local government taxes.

+ State licensed English speaking guides throughout the tour.

+ All touring in modern air-conditioned tour buses.

Day 1: Tuesday, March 14

We meet in the afternoon at Newark Airport for our overnight flight to Tel Aviv. Dinner will be served on board the plane, and we hope to be able to sleep well before our landing in Israel the next morning.

Day 2: Wednesday, March 15

We land in Tel Aviv the following morning, where we will be met by our guide and driver, and begin our pilgrimage. We will drive north into the Galilee, and after a break for lunch, will visit Mount Tabor, believed to be the site of the Transfiguration, where we can worship together to mark the start of our journey. From Mount Tabor, we will head onwards to Magdala, to our pilgrim hotel on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, which will be our home for the next three nights.


Our morning begins in the town in which the Good News itself began – Nazareth. We will join the local Episcopal community for its Sunday Eucharist, before visiting the Basilica of the Annunciation. After a break for lunch we will visit nearby Cana of Galilee, where Jesus performed his first sign and changed water into wine at the wedding feast. Our day will end with a visit to Sepphoris, a major city at the time of Jesus, where there are breathtaking ruins that show us something of the life of this region in the first century.


Today we will devote ourselves to the events of Jesus’ ministry of healing and teaching around the home he chose in Capernaum, on the Sea of Galilee. We will visit Capernaum itself, as well as sites associated with the Beatitudes, the commissioning of Peter, and the feeding of the Five Thousand. We will go out in a boat on the lake, and we will visit the newly-excavated First Century synagogue adjacent to our own hotel rooms.


Leaving the beauty and tranquility of the Galilee, we will journey through the heart of the West Bank to the major Palestinian city of Nablus. We will see the work of St Luke’s Episcopal Hospital, providing significant specialist medical care in the heart of the city, and visit Jacob’s Well, which was already a place of pilgrimage in the time of Jesus. After lunch we come to the Jordan River to renew our Baptismal Covenant, before coming to the ‘little town’ of Bethlehem, situated behind the 27 foot high Separation Wall, where we will sleep for the next two nights.


After breakfast we drive the short distance to Jerusalem to worship at St George’s Episcopal Cathedral with our sister and brother Episcopalians. After the service we return to Bethlehem to visit the Shepherds Fields and the Church of the Nativity, stopping for lunch at the delightful Tent restaurant in Beit Sahour.

Day 7: monday, march 20

Our morning begins with a visit to the city of Hebron, one of the most important Palestinian cities in the southern West Bank. Here we will visit the Tombs of the Patriarchs, and get a clear sense of the impact of the Occupation on the life of this historic place. Returning to Bethlehem we will visit the St Vincent Crèche, where we can see love expressed in action at what is the only Christian orphanage in the Palestinian territories. After lunch we will visit Bethany before descending the Mount of Olives visiting the churches which celebrate Jesus’ triumphal entry on Palm Sunday, the giving of the Lord’s Prayer and Jesus weeping over Jerusalem. Finally we come to the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of the Agony, where we recall Jesus’ betrayal and arrest. From here we make our way to our hotel conveniently located in East Jerusalem, a short walk from the Old City.


Our day starts with a visit to the Western Wall, the holiest site in the world for Jews. From here we ascend to Mount Zion, to visit and pray in the Abbey of the Dormition, the room associated with the Last Supper and the Day of Pentecost. Our morning closes at the church of St Peter in Gallicantu, built on what is believed to be the High Priest’s palace, in which Jesus was imprisoned on the last night of his life. After lunch we visit the synagogue of the Hadassah Hospital, to see its breathtaking windows by Marc Chagall that depict the twelve sons of Jacob. We also visit nearby Ein Karem, the birthplace of John the Baptist, where we will can sing ‘Magnificat’ in the place where Mary first sang her great hymn of thanksgiving. Our day will finish with a visit to the Israel Museum, to see a remarkable model of Jerusalem at the time of Christ, and the Shrine of the Book, which tells the story of the Dead Sea Scrolls.


This morning we drive down to the Jordan Valley, heading south to the hilltop fortress of Masada, the great fortified palace built by Herod the Great, and site of the famous siege in 74CE. After a thorough tour of this remarkable site, we visit Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. After a break for lunch, we will have the chance to float in the unique, mineral-laden waters of the Dead Sea, before returning to our hotel.


We make an early start this morning in the hope of being allowed to ascend the Temple Mount, to get a close look at the Dome of the Rock and the Al Aqsa Mosque. From here we come to St Anne’s church and the pools of Bethesda, after which we make our way to the Ecce Homo Convent, and after celebrating the Eucharist, we will make our way prayerfully along the Via Dolorosa, until we come to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and remember Christ’s death and burial. After lunch, for those who wish, there will be an optional visit to the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial.

Day 11: FRIDAY, MARCH 24

This morning we will journey seven miles west of Jerusalem to a site believed to be biblical Emmaus, to remember the appearance of the risen Christ to two disciples. From here we go onwards to Caesarea Maritima, on the shores of the Mediterranean. After a lunch by the sea, we will see the impressive remains of this once great city, and recall the great stories of Peter and Cornelius, and Paul in front of the Roman governor Festus. We return to Jerusalem for our final dinner together.


After an early breakfast we depart for the airport for our mid-morning flight back to Newark, landing in the afternoon. From here we return to our homes, ready to tell those we meet about all we have discovered in the land of the Holy One.

Download pdf brochure