Hannah and Je together

Monday, 7 July 2014

Second Holy Land Trip – Third Day – Jerusalem Walking Tour

Before I begin today, I want to add some of yesterday.  I sat next to a mother-daughter family from Switzerland in the sharing taxi to Jerusalem.  I thought that they were speaking German, so I asked them a few questions.  I confirmed that Switzerland has four official languages.  I learned that majority speaks German though.  The mother told me that their German is different from the German in Germany.  They both said that they can understand what Germans say, but Germans do not understand well what they say.  They learn German German at school.  The mother said that Switzerland has four different German dialects, and the daughter said that her teacher in the class taught that they have twelve different German dialects in their country.

So, I got up early in the morning.  I asked the lady in the hotel counter where the Lutheran church is.  She looked up the map a bit but could not find.  She just pointed the Christian quarter and said, “it should be somewhere around here.”  I found that Church in the map from the book which theology professor Dr. Cathey borrowed me.  The map was not the best detail, so I asked people on the street.

Empty Road in Old City Jerusalem

Empty Road in Old City Jerusalem

In the early in the morning, there was almost no one on the street.  The same street feels so different without people.  It is people that makes a place lively or dead, holy or defiled, peaceful or turmoil.

Sunday Service at Holy Sepulchre

Sunday Service at Holy Sepulchre

I went to the Holy Sepulchre first.  There was some Sunday service was on going.  I went inside the tomb place, and tried to stay a little while praying because there were not many people.  But clergyman in charge of there tapped the door and asked us to come out quickly.  I found the line got so long in just a few seconds.

Byzantine Cardo

Byzantine Cardo

I went to the Lutheran church of our Redeemer to find out that the service is at 9.  I had little more than an hour, so I walked to Jewish quarter.  The picture above is Cardo, Byzantine market place, and is market now too.

Jewish and Learning, the same word

Jewish and Learning, the same word

Across the Cardo, there is a centre (there are so many centres in the Jewish quarter), “Arie and Eva Halpern Centre for Jewish Life and Learning.”  One thing I like about Jewish is that they value the learning.  It looks like being Jewish means continuous lifetime learning.

LUtheran Church of our Redeemer

Lutheran Church of our Redeemer

Then I went to the Lutheran church.  About 25 people gathered.  This is the church that Ted and Paula Hiebert and their children attended for a year while they were living in Jerusalem.  The service was OK, not that different from Presbyterians.

Dome of the Rock

Dome of the Rock

After the service, I went back to the Jewish quarter right away since nobody talked to me at the church.  This is the view of the Dome of the Rock, and we can see the Western wall below.

Ancient Wasabi Bowl?

Ancient Wasabi Bowl?

I went to the Burnt House Museum.  It is the excavated ruin of the house belong to Kathros family.  It is considered that the family is the priests.  The picture above is one of the founding in the house, and it looks like wasabi bowl in Japanese sushi restaurant.

Burnt House

Burnt House

Many things were found in the ruin including the cut bone of a girl’s arm and arrow-head.  I can just guess how the battle was when the city was destroyed.

In the burnt house I met two Korean girls.  One of them are working on M.Div at a full-gospel seminary (I forgot the school name).

Back on the street, I was looking at the street map, and a Palestinian old man came and he would show me things (he means guide, I guess).  I said, it is OK, and he said ‘just a few shekels, I will show you good things.’  I had only 16 shekels at that time.  So I showed it and he took it, then he said, “twenty-dollar more.”  And I realised that he is just a cheater, and said that I did not have any money.  Then he just left with my money, and I asked him my money back because he was not doing anything worth for the money.  He heard me and he ran so fast, disappeared.

About the money, I was not lying.  I actually had no money with me.  So I went to the nearby ATM.

Ritual Bath at Archaeological Museum

Ritual Bath at Archaeological Museum

I went to archaeological Museum, named “Herodia Quarter.”  It is very close to the burnt house, and this museum contains several houses all rich upper class Jewish people 2,000 years ago.

One thing unique about Jewish archaeology is that we find ritual bath wherever we go.  Some house has even multiple ritual bathrooms.  It looks like that ancient Jews only bathed without doing any other things.



Then I came out of the underground Museum (both Burnt house and Archaeological Museum are underground, and over the ground are normal building and shops), and ate lunch at Hallelujah, where the McCormick group also ate when we were visiting Jewish Quarter.  The burger was so huge!

Actually almost where I go, I can  recall my memory.  There are not many place that I have not yet been to.  The local tour guide George Filmon and the Guiding Star literally covered the most out of it.

Rampart Walk

Rampart Walk

Then I went to the Jaffa gate again, and began to walk down toward the south.  My plan was walk through the city wall.  Then I found the Ramparts Walk, and paid to enter.  The Ramparts walk led me on to the wall.  So I walked on the city wall.  It was so nice, and had great view.  I wondered why Guiding Star did not provide us this one.  But soon I realised that it is quite dangerous.  Unlike the picture above, most part of the walk is open one side, and the floor stones are worn and very slippery.  Even I did not run at all and walked as carefully as possible.  People who travelled with me would know what that means.  It is very high on the wall, and anyone who fears the height cannot walk there.  So I walked on the wall from near the Jaffa Gate to the Dung Gate.

Geopolitical location of Jerusalem - Archaeological Park

Geopolitical location of Jerusalem – Archaeological Park

Then I went to the Archaeological Park.  It is the down the wall near the dung gate.  It is said that it was the royal court and house of Muslim empires.  I found one good thing which shows the location of Jerusalem geographically and politically.  Israel and Jerusalem has been actually the connecting hub of the three continents.

Muslim Cemetary

Muslim cemetery

After the archaeological park, I kept walking through the streets, and I went to the Muslim cemetery right below the wall.  It was quite a walk, and then I met Lion’s Gate where McCormick group used to go to the Haram or Temple Mount.

Ecce Homo

Ecce Homo

I walked through the road and visited the points of Via Dolorosa again.  This is the Ecce Homo point.  People thought that Pontius Pilate said “Ecce Homo (Behold the man)” there.

I had two unpleasant experiences in the Muslim Quarter.  I guess they are Palestinian muslims because they were at the Muslim quarter.

The first thing:  Three young Palestinians were sitting side of the road, and when they saw me they asked if I am from Japan.  I said I am from Chicago, then a guy said with mocking voice “Ayy Am from Shee-Kay-go.”  Another guy also shouted at me, “Welcome to China!”  I did not respond further but kept walking.

The second thing:  A Palestinian young guy asked me, “Hey my friend, come to my shop.”  I gently said, “No thank you.”  Then he shouted “Chinese” twice and mimicked monkey sounds.  I also did not respond at all.

So I had three unpleasant experiences today with the Palestinians including the old man in the morning who ran with my 16 shekels, which is about $5.  There are many things to say about Jewish – Palestinian relationship, and I believe that the Palestinians must make (international) friends desperately, but they are turning possible friends into enemies.

Let me just do some simple calculation.  I met two groups (ignoring the old man because he did not do anything about racism), and let me suppose the two group meet so many Asians daily but mock them racially ten Asians.  And the two groups 3 in common everyday.  Then they together make seventeen Asians unpleasant and turn against them.  Seventeen a day is 6,205 a year.

They may have short fun time mocking others, but they are actually making more than six thousand Anti-Palestinians annually.  They should think what situation they have been in, and are in right now.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Church Tour: Latvian Church in Chicago

It was Sunday, 20th of May, 2012. Hannah’s parents were coming back home from Mission trip in China. For someone who does not know, Hannah’s father is ordained minister and currently serves as Mission Pastor at a Korean Church here in Naperville, Illinois.

And on that day, there was a marathon which blocked around the Church. We tried to go to Church but in vain. The police officer did not let us pass even though I begged that we need to go to Church. The week before, Pastor Ahn announced that the officer would let us pass if we say we are on the way to Church, so I just believed the word. I think I was just too naive or Pastor Ahn was. The American officers are not like Canadian officers. We, without any choice, headed to the airport and Hannah found a Church near the O’Hare airport using her smart phone.

It was Lutheran Church. I’ve never been to a Lutheran Church so I was a little bit excited. And I became even more excited to find it was not just normal Church.

The Church was ethnic Church – a Latvian Church. I had no idea about the Latvian language, and after I came home, I looked up and found that Latvia is a European Country in Baltic region.

In the Church, there were not many people, and even except around three people, all were very very old seniors.

When we entered the Church, the whole congregation looked at us. Maybe we were the first Asians in that Church. 🙂

The Lutheran style of worship looked very alike the Catholic even though I don’t know much about Catholic, it looked like at least to my eyes. The minister (a lady with very beautiful singing voice) and Church clerks were very kind to us. Even though I was not able to understand the sermon in Latvian, I like this sermon way more than the one at yellow box because I realised she was preaching about Jesus – I was able to pick when she was saying Jesus and Christ in her language sounds like ‘Yesu’ and ‘Kristo.’

At the announcement, I understood two more words – NATO and Konference.

Church Information:

English Name: Latvian Zion Lutheran Church

Address: 6551 West Montrose Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60634

Tel: 773-725-3820

The Church is right next to a College, and it might be a little bit tricky to find at first because the street names and curves are tricky. I would like this Church much only if I could understand Latvian.

아내의 부모님이 중국 선교에서 돌아오시는 날이 2012년 5월 20일 주일이었다. 혹시 모르는 분들을 위해 설명을 하자면 장인 어른은 목사님이시고 현재 일리노이주의 네이퍼빌에 있는 한국인 교회에서 선교 목사로 섬기고 계신다.

그 날, 교회 주변에 마라톤이 있어서 길이 봉쇄되었다. 교회를 가려 했지만 헛수고였다. 교회 가야 한다고 애걸했지만 경찰관이 통과시켜주지 않았다. 그 전주에 안목사님이 교회 간다고 하면 경찰이 통과시켜 줄거라고 해서 그대로 믿었는데 지금 생각하면 내가 너무 순진했던 듯 하다. 아니면 목사님이 순진했던가. 미국 경찰은 캐나다 경찰 같지 않다. 경찰에게 교회 가야 한다고 애걸했는데 통과시켜주지 않았다. 그래서 어쩔 수 없이 공항으로 출발했고, 아내가 스마트폰을 사용해서 공항 근처에 있는 교회를 찾아냈다.

루터교였다. 루터교에는 한 번도 가본 적이 없어서 좀 흥분되었다. 그리고 곧 일반적인 교회가 아니란 걸 알고는 더욱 흥분되었다.

라트비아인 교회였다. 그게 뭔지 몰랐는데, 집에 와서 찾아보니 유럽의 발틱 지역에 있는 나라라고 한다.

교회에는 사람이 별로 많지는 않았는데, 그리고 약 세명을 빼고는 모두 완전 엄청 나이가 드신 분들뿐이었다.

교회에 들어가니 온 사람들이 우릴 처다봤다. 그것도 멍~하니. 아마 그 교회에 간 첫 아시아 사람이 아니었을까 한다.

루터교 형식의 예배는 천주교와 비슷했다. 천주교 예배에 대해 잘 모르지만 어쨋든 내 눈에는 그렇게 보였다. 노래할 때 목소리가 아주 아름다운 여자 목사님과 교회 섬기는 분들은 무척 친절했다. 라트비아어인 설교는 못 알아들었지만 지난 번의 노란통 교회보다는 훨씬 마음에 들었다. 왜냐면 예수 그리스도에 대해 설교한다는 것은 알았기 때문이다. 예수님 또는 그리스도를 말할 때는 알아들었다. ‘예수’ 그리고 ‘크리스토’ 와 같이 들렸다.

광고에서도 나토라는 단어와 콘포론스라는 단어는 알아들었다.

교회 정보:

정식 영어 이름: Latvian Zion Lutheran Church

주소: 6551 West Montrose Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60634

전화번호: 773-725-3820

교회는 어떤 대학교 바로 옆에 있는데, 길 이름하고 길의 커브가 좀 이상해서 처음에는 찾기가 어려울 수 있다. 내가 라트비아어만 알아 들었어도 이 교회를 꽤 좋아했을 것 같다.

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