Baptism Site 2020

  • strict warning: Only variables should be passed by reference in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/captcha/captcha.inc on line 61.
  • strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 1113.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_field::query() should be compatible with views_handler::query($group_by = false) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_field.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of content_handler_field::element_type() should be compatible with views_handler_field::element_type($none_supported = false, $default_empty = false, $inline = false) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/cck/includes/views/handlers/content_handler_field.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_sort::options_validate() should be compatible with views_handler::options_validate($form, &$form_state) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_sort.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_sort::options_submit() should be compatible with views_handler::options_submit($form, &$form_state) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_sort.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_sort::query() should be compatible with views_handler::query($group_by = false) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_sort.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter::options_validate() should be compatible with views_handler::options_validate($form, &$form_state) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_filter.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter::query() should be compatible with views_handler::query($group_by = false) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_filter.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_plugin_query::options_submit() should be compatible with views_plugin::options_submit($form, &$form_state) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/plugins/views_plugin_query.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_plugin_style_default::options() should be compatible with views_object::options() in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/plugins/views_plugin_style_default.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_plugin_row::options_validate() should be compatible with views_plugin::options_validate(&$form, &$form_state) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/plugins/views_plugin_row.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 1113.
  • strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 1113.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_field_user::init() should be compatible with views_handler_field::init(&$view, $options) in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/modules/user/views_handler_field_user.inc on line 0.
  • strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 1113.
  • strict warning: Only variables should be passed by reference in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/captcha/captcha.inc on line 61.
  • strict warning: Only variables should be passed by reference in /home/abounaor/public_html/english/sites/all/modules/captcha/captcha.inc on line 61.

Baptism Site 2020

By Fr. Dr. Rif’at Bader

The arrival of His Majesty King Abdullah II Ben Al-Hussein to the Baptism Site coincided with Jordan’s marking the passage of two decades of noble efforts designed to develop and to promote the site worldwide. The extended Jordanian family, with its Christians and Muslims in addition to 40 heads of the Anglican Churches in the world, and heads of Churches of noble Jerusalem met with His Majesty the King and with Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Baptism Site Commission His Royal Highness Prince Ghazi Ben Muhammad in a special celebration marking the beginning of the new year and the 20th pilgrimage season to the Baptism Site. They proceeded together hand-in-hand towards a new decade which augurs, God willing, more progress for our dear Jordan involving the flourishing of the tourism sector, especially the religious one, in our holy country.

Twenty years ago, the pilgrimage to the Baptism Site (which was historically called Wadi Al-Kharrar) began on January 7, 2000. At the time, all the Churches of the Kingdom held a solemn celebration near Tell Mar Elias, where 2,000 candles were lit symbolizing 2,000 years since the start of divine salvation. Since then, an annual tradition has begun stipulating that there will be a pilgrimage by the Catholic Churches on the second Friday of January of each year, and on the third Friday for the fraternal Orthodox Churches, in addition to the Syriac, Armenian, Lutheran Churches and the various Churches in the Kingdom that are active in the spiritual and humanitarian fields.

Going back in memory to two decades ago, we recall at that time the historic visit of Pope John Paul II (recently canonized saint) to the Baptism Site. We also recall the huge sandstorm that did not stop 40,000 people from coming to accompany the Pope on his historic pilgrimage visit to the Baptism Site, which was officially recognized as a Christian pilgrimage site.

Optimism is still great as the current stage has been a stage of preparedness. This includes the stage of mine clearance at the beginning of the third millennium and the building of churches as the construction of some of them is still under way. Among the churches awaiting inauguration is the Church of the Baptism of Lord Jesus Christ, whose foundation stone was laid for Pope Benedict XVI on May 10, 2009 in the presence of Their Majesties King Abdullah II Ben Al-Hussein and Queen Rania Al-Abdullah. Pope Francis prayed in this church during his visit in 2014.

Strenuous efforts have undoubtedly been exerted by the Baptism Site Commission, whose board of trustees is chaired by His Royal Highness Prince Ghazi Ben Muhammad, as well as by a number of specialists in developing the tourism sector from the tourism and the Church sectors. Efforts are also being exerted by the Jordanian Ministry of Tourism, the Jordan Tourism Board, the Churches, and the media outlets. They all work in concord to promote the frequency of visits to the Baptism Site by pilgrims and tourists.

So, what do we aspire to in the new decade? We aspire to see all the churches and facilities built, and have a great media momentum not only confined to Jordan, but to all countries of the world in order to urge them to visit this unique site, which is testified in the Holy Bible, especially in the Gospels, as well as in the historical testimonies recorded by travelers, the most important of whom was Spanish Egeria who wrote of her pilgrimage to the Holy Land in the year 194.

We are confident that the celebration of the churches in the presence of His Majesty the King at the Baptism Site--with the wonderful hymns performed by the Fountain of Love Choir and the Virgin Lady of Mafraq Choir--will constitute a new start, God willing, designed to exert more efforts in order to develop the Baptism Site and to enhance tourism to the site by launching a new global promotion media plan. Let our goal, after marking the million visitors to Petra last year, also celebrate the end of this year with a million visitors to the Baptism Site, God willing.

abouna.org@gmail.com

Comment through the site Comment through facebook

Comments

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.