The Gospel Trail – Good News for Pilgrims

The Gospel Trail is a change-catalyzing plan that includes Christian sites in the forests of KKL-JNF in northern Israel and also outside them, such as Mount Precipice, Jordan Park, Beth Saida and Korazim.

The Gospel Trail is a route for Christian pilgrims, and it recreates the path of Jesus in the Galilee.

The project includes infrastructure all along the way, which will allow for creating sources of income from tourism in the Galilee.

The Gospel Road will have a number of focal points, primarily the Pope’s Park in Korazim.
Korazim Park is north of the Sea of Galilee and Mount Beatitudes, east of the “House in the Galilee” Church, which was built in 2000 in honor of the visit of Pope Paul VI.

 

Good News for Pilgrims

 
ELI KEDEM
BAEMEK UVARAMA Magazine
29.5.2012
 


View from Jumping Mount over Lower Galilee. Photo: Mira Zar

Last week, at an event with many participants at the Kibbutz Lavie Hotel, the Gospel Trail project was unveiled – a tourism project for Christian pilgrims visiting the Holy Land.

This is a route that takes the visitor down the paths and on the roads where Jesus of Nazareth walked, as is estimated and according to the testimonies of the evangelists in the New Testament. The route begins at Mount Precipice in Nazareth and culminates in Capernaum, with most of the road traversing areas in the Regional Council of the Lower Galilee, but also in the Jordan Valley and near Kibbutz Beit Keshet, Kibbutz Hukok, Kibbutz Lavie and Kibbutz Ginosar. Along the route there are forests and woodlands, historic sites and places for dining and lodging.

The event at the Lavie Hotel was attended by developers and professionals in the tourism industry, who met to receive up to date information about the route, which was inaugurated recently. The preliminary tour and the event itself was attended by Noaz Bar Nir, General Director of the Ministry of Tourism, Amir Oren, also from the Ministry of Tourism, who promoted the project from its inception, Moti Dotan, Director of the Lower Galilee Regional Council, Dr. Omri Bonneh, KKL-JNF Director of the Northern Region, local council directors from Bedouin and Arab communities of Nazareth and the Lower Galilee and personnel from the Ministry of Tourism.

In the first part of the day, the participants walked on the path along the crest of Mount Precipice near the city of Nazareth, from where the breathtaking panoramas of the Jezreel Valley and its settlements could be seen, as well as Mount Tabor and Givat Hamoreh. The valley in front of us, explained Prof. Yisca Harani, whose specialty is Christianity, has been a witness to all the major events in the history of the land of Israel, because the armies of the conquerors—Egyptians, Romans and Muslims—passed through it. Harani said that the contemporary tourist is interested in adding an authentic experience to his visit in the Holy Land, which will connect him to the local landscapes and people, and to visit places that have maintained their original appearance as it was in the time of Jesus.

The Gospel Trail can be traveled by foot—part of it also on a bicycle—and takes 3 to 4 days. Alternatively, as with the Israel National Trail, it can be done one segment at a time. Tourists will be able to be assisted by a special map that was produced for the project, which indicates the points all along the route that are important historically and religiously. The project coordinators emphasized that the road was a positive collaboration between Jews, Muslims and Christians, with the aim of putting the Lower Galilee on the map of Christian tourism.