During the Season of Lent our consciousness is drawn to Holy places like Jerusalem. I’ve had the privilege of being there during the Holy Triduum. It was the experience of a lifetime and has been since the 4th Century, where those on the path have come to see Palestine as a ‘holy land’ and Jerusalem as the “City of Many Faiths”. No other place, not even Rome, holds the same distinction in the minds of those seeking to find a connection to Spirit. As St. Jerome once said, “The whole mystery of faith is native to this country and this sacred city.”
No matter how many centuries pass or how widespread the message of Christ becomes, our souls are wedded to this land that gave birth to humanity’s first experience of Creation in the flesh. A dusty land where many of history’s greatest leaders have journeyed and even today provides a snapshot of our past, present and future as people of the path. To experience this land as a pilgrim allows us to be drawn not only into the history of who we are as a people of faith, but connects us somehow with the geo-historical locale in which it all took place. A walk through the Holy Land allows us to be part of the richness of our tradition and journey as a ‘people of the word’, making real the importance of a sojourn to places that nurture and contribute to our process.
Just as incense leaves an odor on the air it touches, so God has left traces of himself in this desolate land. Pilgrims today have that same eagerness to breath in the fragrant air of this relationship where human and divine become as one.
- How did holy land become a place of religious significance (wiki.answers.com)