Sunday, January 8, 2012

Baptism of Our Lord

The Jordan River

In honor of the feast of the Baptism of our Lord, I've been flipping through my pilgrimage photos and thought I would post a few here.

Along the banks of the Jordan.
We visited Yardenit, a baptismal site along the Jordan River. Today, the Jordan River is generally very small, and much of the water that once flowed through it is now siphoned off for other uses. But at Yardenit, the river is a good size and very beautiful.

On the day we visited, Yardenit was busy - crowds of people, lots of baptisms, and many things for sale. I had been looking forward to spending time at the Jordan, but this felt a bit too commercial and I was turned off by it.

Mark 1:9-11 is written in many languages around the site.

In the midst of the crowds, Mary Jo read us the scriptural account of Jesus' baptism from Mark, and we wandered along the river. Anthony found a very quiet spot and we went down a little flight of stairs and put our feet into the water.

I can't explain it, but the experience suddenly became very intimate, as if we were the only people there. Our priests blessed us and I could feel the presence of the Holy Spirit as we splashed in the water and laughed together. It was one of those holy moments that you don't see coming! As a result, I have very fond memories of our trip to the Jordan and still feel blessed by it!

The sunset was breathtaking as we left Yardenit that evening.


  1. Thank you for sharing all of this with us - the photographs and the very personal story. Beautiful!

  2. Leslie, I felt just as moved as you were at the River Jordan.. I nearly cried then as I read the story from Mark--and shed a few tears again as Peter took us back with his sermon yesterday. The green river was so beautiful and so serene despite the many "pilgrims," kids, and tourists--truly magical. For me it was one of the highlights of our amazing journey.


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