Heating Up…

If you’re keeping up with the news in Israel, don’t panic (and yes, that really is on my backpack) because I’m not in Jerusalem.  If you have no idea what is going on, great.  Skip to the end.  Nothing to see here.

As a brief reminder, this week ends the High Holy weeks in the Jewish culture. It starts with Rosh Hashana, then Yom Kippur, and ending with Sukkot. It is a season of reflection on sin, extending forgiveness, and celebrating rebirth in the new year.

Well, just like in the US, there are fringe groups in Israel that, over the past year or so, have become emboldened to do terrible things.  This is a week of vacation for Israelis to celebrate Sukkot.  There are celebrations, dinners, music festivals, and more all over the place to celebrate the holiday.  Here is what is going on in Jerusalem:

Mina Fanton, a former Jerusalem city council member and activist, called on the public to demonstrate against the presence of Christian tourists at the Feast of Tabernacles in Jerusalem on Tuesday evening and the Jerusalem March on Wednesday.

The Feast of Tabernacles is the largest annual Evangelical Christian celebration in Israel which brings thousands of tourists to the Holy Land for an 8-day-long celebration over Sukkot, organized by the International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem (ICEJ).

“Missionary traps” will be set at the Feast of Tabernacles’ Israeli night on Tuesday evening, Fanton said and added, “We won’t allow it.”

Read the full article here…

Israel is facing the same sort of issues that we are facing in the US with malicious people hijacking the government and injecting both bad and dangerous ideas into the mainstream.

Here is a link to more news on Anti-Christian Sentiment from All Israel News:

All Israel News: Anti Christian Sentiment

I actually was thinking about going to Jerusalem to attend a concert, but sheer laziness prompted me to not go – the idea of going to Jerusalem for just one evening and then moving on to Tel Aviv before flying out to Jordan was just too much for me and I really don’t like crowds.

So, where the heck am I?

I am in Degania Bet, the first kibbutz established in Israel (I think it was actually Palestine at the time) in 1920.  Degania Bet at the southern tip of the Sea of Galilee.  You can read all about the hotel and the kibbutz here – they do a much better job of explaining than I would.

Welcome to the Degania Bet Resort

I’ll explore and learn all about kibbutz life tomorrow.  There is a chocolate factory here – I think I’m most excited about that.  Tomorrow might also be a water sport and beach day.

Today I spent a couple of hours exploring the historic port city of Acco, which is on the banks of the Mediterranean Sea.  It’s an ancient port city where Christian pilgrims used to arrive by boat.  Acco was also home to the Knights Templar, who protected and cared for the pilgrims.  In Acco, there is a fortress that included a hospital that the Knights operated out of.  There is also a Turkish bath, which was only marginally interesting.

For the railroad crowd, I did also go to the Israeli Railroad Museum.  Trucks in the US are bigger than anything the Israeli Railroad has, so, honestly, it wasn’t that interesting…