Galilee, Day 11 (11/24/11): Our Galilee Rotation ended as we checked out of the hotel at En Gev Kibbutz and drove to Haifa, the third largest city in Israel. Located at a strategic point where Mount Carmel juts into the sea, forming a protected bay right where the Jezreel Valley opens up, Haifa is the largest and most important port in Israel.
Below is today's highlights video:
Our objective in Haifa was the German Templar Cemetery, which lies behind a British military cemetery that houses the dead who helped seize Palestine from the Turks. The German Templars were a millennialist German denomination that began to settle in the Holy Land about 1850, bringing advancements in agriculture and technology to Palestine. Early LDS Missionaries in what was then the Turkish mission came to Haifa, primarily to work with resident European Christians like the Templars. Two of these young LDS missionaries, Elders Clark and Haag, died while in the Holy Land, and their graves, which we visited, are there in the Templar Cemetery. Also buried there are two early converts, Georg and Magdalena Grau. It was very moving listening to Andy Skinner recount their missions and read a letter from Elder Clark to his loved ones at home in Draper, Utah.
|The Templar Cemetery lies behind this WWI military cemetery|
|The Templar graves are marked with stones bearing Bible verses in German or other touching dedications.|
|The broken column of Elder Clark's grave symbolizes a life cut off early|
|Elder Haag's grave|
|The grave of Magdalena Grau, the wife of the first German convert in Haifa|
|The Tomb of the Bab, or "Herald," of the Baha'i religion|
|The student reenactment of Elijah's contest|
|Statue commemorating Elijah|
|The inside of the chapel where we sang|
We then went on to the roof and read the account of Elijah and the prophets of Ba'al from 1 Kings 18. We talked about modern instances of "halting between two opinions," and I also brought in Alma 5, pointing out how important that it is that we are truly, and individually, converted . . . and we have felt so once, to feel so again. From the roof overlook, there were stunning views of the Jezreel Valley.
Our last site of the day was Caesarea, the city on the coast that Herod the Great transformed into a busy port and the most important Greco-Roman city in his kingdom. Later it became the capital of the Roman province of Judea, and it was here that Cornelius became the first Gentile convert baptized. Paul was held here for two years and tried before appealing to Caesar and being sent to Rome.
|With my students in the heavily renovated theater in Caesarea|
|Remains of Herod's palace|
|Student races in the hippodrome|
|Baths at Caesarea|
|The Cardo or main street|
|The platform on which Herod built a temple to Augustus|
|Ahmed carving the turkey|
|Rachel, um, came to the diner as a turkey|
|Here she sadly contemplates the dilemma of a turkey eating turkey|