Palestine-Israel Immersion Trip 2015, Perkins School of Theology

The January 3-14, 2015, Palestine-Israel Immersion Trip for alumni/ae and students of Perkins School of Theology-SMU — sponsored by the school’s Global Theological Education Program — includes 17 participants. The first-ever Perkins immersion experience for alums will be led by Dr. Jaime Clark-Soles, associate professor of New Testament at Perkins School of Theology. Each day, participants will experience Palestine and Israel through a different theme, including:

– The World of Jesus
– The Birth of Jesus
– Orthodox Christmas
– Jesus in Galilee, Jesus in Judea
– Contemporary Palestine
– Contemporary Israel

The itinerary includes Qumran, Masada, Bethlehem, the Church of the Nativity, Megiddo, Capernaum, Nazareth, Jerusalem, and other locations. In addition to Dr. Clark-Soles, leadership will include Dr. Robert Hunt, director of the Global Theological Education Program, and the Rev. Connie Nelson, director of Public Affairs and Alumni/ae Relations.

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Our group in Bethlehem

IMG_4582A group of 18 students, alums, faculty/staff and friends of Perkins School of Theology-SMU visited significant sites today in and near Bethlehem.

First, King Herod’s fortress-palace – Herodium – which lies between Bethlehem and the Dead Sea. Now a national park, the site holds what some archeologists believe to be the tomb of King Herod.

Next, the group toured the Shepherds’ Field – believed to be the site of the angel’s announcement to shepherds of the birth of Jesus.

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve for Orthodox Christians, and the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem was filled with pilgrims – including the Perkins immersion group – eager to see the location traditionally known as the site of the birth of Jesus. Tomorrow, sites will include the fortress of Masada, the Dead Sea, Qumran, and Jericho.

Faculty leader of the Palestine-Israel course is Dr. Jaime Clark-Soles, associate professor of New Testament at Perkins School of Theology.

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